Mayor de Blasio Announces Additional Actions To Improve Health, Safety, And Working Conditions For 65,000+ Delivery Workers

Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced, in advance of legal workplace protections that go into effect in 2022.

de Blasio has marshaled agencies together to implement a series of additional efforts to support and improve the health, safety, and working conditions for the city’s 65,000+ delivery workers.

“Delivery workers have served as essential workers throughout the pandemic and we’re grateful for their contributions to New York City’s economy,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “These increased safety measures and labor protections are key to helping delivery workers recover and thrive.”

“It is not an exaggeration to say that delivery workers kept our City running throughout the pandemic. At great personal risk, they have delivered goods to homebound New Yorkers and have kept our small businesses afloat,” said J. Phillip Thompson, Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives. “I applaud the organizing effort of advocacy organizations who have helped secure basic workplace protections for delivery workers, and hope that these measures taken by the City can continue to uplift and support these essential workers.”

“In 2022, we will regulate for the first time the growing number of delivery app companies and enforce brand-new labor standards for delivery workers, including minimum pay standards and the right to control their routes,” said the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) Commissioner Peter A. Hatch. “And today we are proud to help deliver new City resources that address immediate concerns of delivery workers who have done so much to fuel New York through the pandemic.”

“As they have shown by supporting residents and restaurants across the boroughs time and again, delivery workers are a crucial pillar of New York City,” said Lorraine Grillo, the City’s Senior Advisor for Recovery. “These measures to advance their workplace safety, and initiatives to recognize their importance to our city, are a critical step in protecting these essential workers and in creating a fair and equitable recovery for all New Yorkers.”

“While some New Yorkers utilize delivery workers for convenience, many others rely on them as the key to survival during the ongoing pandemic. Their work is hard and their days are long, but they have also been preyed upon by criminals. Delivery workers have been targeted for money and e-bikes. The NYPD is in touch with the associations that represent them and officers have enhanced their focus by adding cameras on key routes and serial numbers to help identify stolen bikes. We underline that the NYPD does not share with immigration authorities any information about victims or witnesses. The NYPD remains committed to doing all it can to protect these essential workers,” said Police Commissioner Dermot Shea.

“Since the onset of the pandemic, delivery workers were on the frontlines of this crisis, showing us that they have and will continue to be essential to our city,” said Raquel Batista, Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs. “These actions are a significant win to ensure the safety and livelihood of this community. MOIA looks forward to working with our sister agencies to ensure deliveries know their rights.”

“Whether it is on the job safety or access to healthcare, delivery workers deserve to be treated with respect and as a city, we must deliver for them on these basic rights,” said Jonnel Doris, NYC Department of Small Business Services Commissioner. At SBS we are committed to advocating for New Yorkers working hard to make a living. So, we welcome the new protections and look forward to seeing them implemented in the coming months.”

“During the pandemic, New Yorkers came to see our delivery workers for what they truly are: essential employees,” said DOT Commissioner Hank Gutman. “We thank our colleagues at NYPD and DCWP for their excellent coordinated work to keep these workers safe, including brighter bridge crossings and more assistance for workers victimized by crime. At DOT, we will continue our dedicated efforts to get these workers the best delivery cyclist education as well as have them fitted with helmets and other safety equipment crucial to the job.”

“Delivery workers are the backbone of our service industry, and the COVID-19 pandemic disproportionately affects their health and livelihood,” said NYC Care Senior Director Jonathan Jimenez, MD. “NYC Care and NYC Health + Hospitals is proud to serve them and excited to make sure all delivery workers, regardless of income or immigration status, know they have a right to high-quality healthcare at NYC Health + Hospitals.”

This work would not have been possible without dedicated advocates like the Workers Justice Project and Los Deliveristas Unidos.



“With Worker’s Justice Project’s support, app-based delivery workers have been organizing as Los Deliveristas Unidos in New York City for the past two years. While delivering New Yorker’s food, Deliveristas mobilized 4,000 delivery workers from Times Square to City Hall to push for historic legislative reforms that provide rights and improve the working conditions of app-based delivery workers. In partnership with elected officials, New York City has become the first city in the nation to deliver justice and essential protections for delivery workers, including regulating delivery distance, minimum pay standards, and bathroom access. We look forward to continuing partnering with the City of New York to ensure these hard-fought regulations are enforced and make a difference in workers’ lives,” said Ligia Guallpa, Executive Director of Worker’s Justice Project (WJP).

#EssentialToNYC Campaign

This month, the City is launching a digital art campaign, #EssentialToNYC, reaffirming support for delivery workers and other essential workers, including bodega and grocery store workers, home care workers, nail salon technicians, and all aestheticians, and taxi workers, and all workers who transport New Yorkers. Featuring real New Yorkers of these professions, the campaign will highlight the importance of these workers in keeping the City running, connect New Yorkers to resources, and encourage New Yorkers to stand in solidarity against acts of discrimination, harassment, and violence that many essential workers continue to face. For more information, graphics and resources, visit here.

Safety

In response to many issues brought forward by directly impacted workers, the City is providing:

  • additional lighting and NYPD cameras at Willis Avenue Bridge bike paths;
  • additional safety resources at bridge crossings into Manhattan;
  • a bike etching program to recover stolen e-bikes;
  • expansion of DOT’s traffic safety education and helmet giveaways for delivery workers

Healthcare Access

NYC Care has launched a new initiative to actively work to enroll delivery workers who are un/underinsured. To enroll in NYC Care, New Yorkers can call 1-646-NYC-Care. For more information, visit www.nyccare.nyc.

Worker Protection

The City has provided DCWP with funding to implement and enforce the new laws regulating delivery apps and worker protections that go into effect in 2022. Starting January 24, many food delivery apps must be licensed by DCWP, bringing needed oversight to the industry.

Apps will be able to begin applying for licenses later this month. Starting January 24, licensed apps must tell workers the tip for each delivery and the total pay and tips for the previous day. The law also seeks to provide increased access to bathrooms for workers of licensed apps.

Delivery workers who deliver food for any app—not just licensed apps—will also have added new rights on April 22, 2022, and January 1, 2023.

Starting April 22, 2022, apps must:

  • Give workers a required notice explaining their new rights.
  • Give workers more control over their deliveries. Workers can limit how far they will go from restaurants and refuse to use bridges or tunnels.
  • Tell workers trip details before they accept delivery. Must include address for pickup, estimated time and distance for trip, tip if known, pay.
  • Pay workers at least once a week. Apps cannot charge a fee to process payment.
  • Give workers a free insulated food delivery bag after give deliveries.

Starting January 1, 2023, apps must pay workers the new minimum pay rate that the City will set. The rate will not include tips.

DCWP is meeting with relevant stakeholders, including workers, for the wage structure study it will be conducting to determine the new minimum rate.

Delivery workers, apps, restaurants and consumers can monitor nyc.gov/DeliveryApps in the coming weeks and months for multilingual information about these regulations. DCWP was also recently funded to mount a public awareness campaign for workers in spring 2022.

“I celebrate Mayor de Blasio for his forceful, whole-of-government approach to improving working conditions for the Deliveristas in New York City, ” said Senator Charles Schumer. “New laws and energetic efforts by city agencies are a critical step in ensuring dignity and safety for thousands of delivery workers, who risked their lives to keep us fed during the pandemic. I look forward to continuing to support the organizing of delivery workers and coordinating with city partners to secure justice for these essential workers. ”

“I am so happy that the city is taking bold transformative steps to give delivery workers the protections and benefits that they deserve. It is of utmost importance that the city also provides adequate language service for these essential workers who require translation to ensure they can access every benefit we are rolling out. Delivery workers are vital to our city’s economy and I am proud that the city is taking a multi-prong approach to providing immediate relief for these hard-working New Yorkers,” said Council Member Margaret Chin.

“Delivery workers have been on the frontlines of the pandemic, keeping New Yorkers going at great personal risk. Their organizing for fair pay, dignity, and protection is transforming this industry. I’m proud that NYC will be the first in the nation to require minimum pay for delivery workers, and that our city is taking strong steps to address the harassment and safety issues that workers face every day,” said Council Member Brad Lander.

“Food delivery workers kept us alive and fed during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. We also saw them defy extreme weather. The will once again be called upon as the city sees a rise of infections, hospitalizations, and deaths resulting from the Omicron variant. They are truly heroes,” said Council Member Carlos Menchaca, Chair of the Committee on Immigration. “I was proud to join my colleagues, Worker Justice Project and Los Deliveristas Unidos in passing a legislative package that dignifies their work and brings accountability to big corporate delivery apps, including my bill to ensure app companies can no longer exploit food delivery workers by delaying payments through fees or bank requirements. Every worker deserves equal and immediate access to their pay, without having to pay a fee for their own money. For too long, delivery app companies have taken advantage of their status to exploit their labor, while the City has ignored them because of their inability to navigate our often complicated and bureaucratic systems. As we unveil new initiatives to help delivery workers, we must never forget that that worker have the power and we must follow their lead in order to create a more equitable city.”

“Advancing worker protections is how this City can ensure it does not leave behind minority and immigrant communities during our recovery. These delivery workers kept our city moving during the height of this pandemic, the minimum we can do is ensure they have access to living wages, health care and safer working conditions. This is how New York City can have the backs of these workers and create a more equitable city,” said Council Member Francisco Moya.

“For nearly two years, my colleagues and I have had the honor of working closely with the Workers Justice Project and Los Deliveristas Unidos in pursuit of rights, protections, and justice for New York City’s delivery workers. In September, in testament to the organizing power of our City’s Deliveristas, the City Council passed a historic package of legislation codifying critical workplace protections. I am grateful to Mayor de Blasio, the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection, and the Department of Small Business Services for joining us in acknowledging deliveristas as the essential workers they are, and bringing even greater protections to these workers as early as next year,” said Council Member Carlina Rivera.

“Delivery workers continue to play an essential role in helping keep New Yorkers safe during the pandemic despite being denied basic worker protections under law and often have been exploited without redress. The new legal workplace protections for delivery workers adopted by the City are the result of a hard-earned advocacy effort spearheaded by Los Deliveristas Unidos and represent a historic victory that ensures delivery workers – many of whom are first-generation immigrants – will be treated with dignity and respect and paid fairly. We commend the de Blasio administration and the City Council for championing the rights of vulnerable workers and urge the incoming Adams administration and City Council to work with delivery workers to ensure that this victory is not merely symbolic but is reinforced with the adequate resources to make the protections real for delivery workers and their families,” said Jason Cone, Chief Public Policy Officer of Robin Hood, New York’s largest poverty-fighting philanthropy.

“Delivery workers brought New York City through some of its darkest days, and we’re glad to see the City deliver essential workplace protections to keep our frontline workers safe,” said Danny Harris, Transportation Alternatives Executive Director. “No delivery worker should fear for their safety while biking, and the protections announced today will help keep delivery cyclists safe on the job. We look forward to our continued advocacy to expand the protected bike lane network in order to provide workers more safe routes around the city.

“Workers in NYC’s gig-economy, and specifically app food delivery workers fall in gray areas or outright gaps of existing legal frameworks of employment rights. Our report revealed that one significant problem for workers remains the lack of regulations defining the employment status, their rights and their relationship with the app platforms companies,” stated Patricia Campos-Medina, Executive Director of the Worker Institute @ ILR Cornell. “Public officials in NYC have a role to play in improving the lives of food delivery workers, and we are eager to continue to partner up with city officials, workers leaders’ members of Los Deliveristas Unidos/the Worker Justice Project, to advance best practices for improving the rights and lives of these essential workers who kept NYC open during the worse days of the pandemic.”

“Over the course of the pandemic, we have seen a lot of flowery appreciation for essential workers, but seen concrete steps only when workers have been organized. And NYC responded! We look forward to partnering with Los Deliveristas Unidos and NYC to ensure the implementation of these policies for all delivery workers,” said Fahd Ahmed, Executive Director, DRUM – Desis Rising Up & Moving.

“For more than a decade, Deliveristas have helped feed New Yorkers while keeping our vital restaurant industry afloat. The story of the Deliverista is the story of New York in so many ways; hardworking, gritty, diverse, resilient and relentless, they truly represent the very best of our city. It’s far past time for us time to offer them common-sense protections like minimum wage guarantees, safe streets and secure parking options that will make their work much easier. We applaud the City for giving Deliveristas the recognition they deserve and look forward to working with officials to implement these important protections,” said Shabazz Stuart, Founder & CEO of Oonee.

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