GMB takes on Amazon delivery firms

The GMB union continues its crusade against ‘bogus self employment’, with plans to take legal action against what the GMB refers to as ‘Amazon delivery companies’.

The union released a statement saying it is to take action on behalf of members working for Prospect Commercials Limited, Box Group Limited and Lloyd Link Logistics Limited.

According to GMB: “The claimants all worked for the companies as couriers, delivering parcels for Amazon.”

GMB said that the drivers should be regarded as employees, but “the companies used the bogus self- employment model to wrongly deny them employment rights such as the national minimum wage and holiday pay”.

The union added: “The drivers were required to attend scheduled shifts that were controlled by Amazon, meaning they did not have the flexibility that is integral to being self-employed. In this situation, the couriers were treated like employees in terms of their working hours, GMB Union contends they should be treated as employees in terms of their rights too.”

The union said that two of the drivers are also claiming that they were dismissed because of whistleblowing, “saying that their roles were terminated because they raised concerns about working practices”. Their concerns included claims that: “the number of parcels allocated to drivers resulted in excessive hours and/or driving unsafely to meet targets”; and “drivers were being underpaid and not being paid amounts that they were contractually entitled to”.

Tim Roache, GMB General Secretary, said: “The day to day reality for many of our members who deliver packages for Amazon, is unrealistic targets, slogging their guts out only to have deductions made from their pay when those targets aren’t met and being told they’re self-employed without the freedom that affords.

“Companies like Amazon and their delivery companies can’t have it both ways – they can’t decide they want all of the benefits of having an employee, but refuse to give those employees the pay and rights they’re entitled to.”