Over the last few weeks some App Delivery Co ‘contractors’ have gone to the media and voiced their concerns about their safety and conditions. As a result, the industry is now under scrutiny – from the public, unions and Fairwork Australia.
Risk Strategies has worked with some of the majors in this field to ensure they’re doing the right thing. As a result, their selection, induction, assessment and training of riders is thorough and locally based to ensure their contractors have a clear understanding of road rules.
The riders’ clothing and equipment, be it bikes or e-bikes, is assessed and accessories such as lights are provided to improve visibility at night. There are initiatives undertaken to improve technology, service delivery, uniforms and equipment. Riders have access to insurance.
This is obviously not the case with some of the others in this rapidly growing industry. Hiding behind contracts and definitions of ‘contractor’ vs ‘employee’ will only go so far… There is not a lot of backtracking to be done, when video footage from the recent ‘electric bicycles in the Sydney’s Eastern Distributor tunnel’ is aired on national television. Not only does this make for bad publicity, it raises a whole lot of questions about how seriously, if at all, the safety of riders and others is taken by some in the industry.
Regardless of the employment relationship, in the eyes of safety legislation in Australia, safety of riders is the responsibility of the organisation paying their invoices – be they direct employees or contractors. There are also further liability concerns should they be found negligent – for the company directors and for the bottom line.
Get ahead of the game and don’t wait for your brand to be tarnished by the wrong kind of advertising.