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In His Own Words: One Deliverista Explains Why Workers Want To Limit Trip Distances

10:50 AM EDT on June 9, 2021

Deliverista Roberto Corrales at City Hall Park on Tuesday. Photo: Dave Colon

On Tuesday afternoon, the City Council held a hearing on a package of bills to establish baseline worker rights for people who make food deliveries through third-party apps. Among the bills is a proposal from City Council Member Justin Brannan that would allow delivery riders to turn down trips that they feel are too long, an issue that leads them to speed in order to get people food miles away from where they actually live. Deliverista Roberto Corrales talked to reporter Dave Colon about why the workers are demanding the ability to control the terms of their trips.

So we want is to limit the apps because I remember I once picked up the food at a Chick-Fil-A at 57th Street and Lexington Avenue, and the customer asked me to deliver to 116th Street! Imagine having to travel long distances like that and sometimes for just a $5 tip, and having to take that risk traveling quickly there in order to deliver the food.

I don't understand why they're making those travel long distances when I see that the same fast food restaurants near the neighborhoods where people order to.

So right now, we cannot say deny traveling those distances. If we say we're not going to take the order right now they either threaten us with deactivation or give us a negative rating that will lead us to being terminated from the apps. Having the opportunity to deny a trip without any retaliation, it means a lot. It will mean we have the ability to do this work without having to take a risk and travel long distances and possibly even getting into accidents just to deliver this food.

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