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Platform workers call for better working conditions

Photo: HaRDstories
Photo: HaRDstories

Today Grab platform workers from different cities across Thailand protested outside the Grab company headquarters opposing a new policy that allegedly limits their working freedom. A Singaporean-based platform business which operates in eight countries has been in Thailand since 2013, providing delivery and transportation services in 16 provinces.

Hundreds of riders from Bangkok gathered in front of the company headquarters during lunchtime, a prime delivery time, to put pressure on the company to call off the new policy that requires them to book their working schedule in advance. The new conditions have gained widespread criticism for limiting the flexibility of their working area and working hours which combined drastically affects their income.

“This is not the flexible job it has claimed to be anymore. It is a job with a strict schedule.” commented a Bangkok rider who requested an interview in anonymity.

Some platform businesses have been criticised for lacking in labour rights standards including welfare and social protection. As a result, many gig workers form informal unions to voice their concerns.

One of the riders wearing the recognisable green jacket added that the working conditions have been getting more unfair to the riders and restaurants over the past years that he has been working. However, he is forced to continue working due to household debt from a 10,000THB loan for supporting his family.

“I can’t stop working. We are all in debt with Grab” explained the rider who joined the strike.