Ride-hailing app company Lalamove has been compelled to face delivery riders for the first time in a dialogue meeting initiated by the Department Of Information And Communications Technology on May 14.

The Coalition of Union Courier Shippers Services Philippines (CUCSSP) said it marked a significant step in addressing concerns among delivery riders of Lalamove in the country.

Missing base fare, distance fee

“Sa sunod-sunod na pagtaas ng gasolina, pagtaas ng bilihin gawa ng inflation rate. Tapos bumaba ang rate ni Lalamove. Nawala pa ang mga incentives na dapat makuha. Halos hindi na kami kumikita sa Lalamove,” said Jhune Olinares, a Lalamove rider and member union of CUCSSP.

[With the continuous price increases in gasoline and basic commodities due to the inflation rate, Lalamove has also lowered its rates. Additionally, the incentives that we are supposed to receive were removed. We are hardly earning anything from Lalamove anymore.]

The International Labor Organization (ILO) has categorized two types of digital labor platforms: web-based and location-based. Web-based platform workers involve remote work like those in Lalamove, Joyride, and Angkas among others. Location-based platform workers, on one hand, supply their services within a specific geographical area, such as in Lazada. 

During the dialogue, the delivery riders argued about the “base fare” and “distance fee” that goes missing in the charge breakdown. According to CUCSSP, they had to demonstrate it live in front of the personnel from Lalamove.

It can be seen that in some charge breakdowns, a P49 base fare is included.
A P49 base fare is added in customer order from Quezon City going to Muntinlupa City which is about 31 to 40 kilometers away.
Delivery riders get confused with missing base fare, distance fee charges that result to low earnings.

“Nung ipinakita natin na wala siyang base fare at delivery fee lang, nagkwestiyon si DICT: ano ang basehan bakit walang computation, kumbaga kasi violation iyon eh,” said Olinares.

[When we showed that there was no base fare and only a delivery fee, DICT questioned what is the basis for not having a computation, because that constitutes a violation.]

In Philippine labor law, non-transparency in wage payments can result in several penalties and sanctions for the employer, specifically under the Labor Code of the Philippines Article 116 and Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Department Order No. 174, Series of 2017.

“Sana i-mandate ng DICT na lahat ng online app ay bigyan ng copy ng digital contract kaming platform workers, bigyan kami ng statement of account. Iyon kasi ang basis para malaman kung kumikita ba kami at para malaman din kung nakasasabay pa o kailangan nang mag-adjust,” said Lazada worker Eric Norman.

[I hope the DICT will mandate that all online apps provide us, the platform workers, with a copy of the digital contract and a statement of account. This is the basis for us to know if we are earning and to determine if we are keeping up or if we need to make adjustments.]

Platform workers demand higher, just wages

“Nag-decide kami sa koalisyon na kailangang ipaglaban na namin ang aming karapatan sa pagpapataas ng sahod,” said Olinares.

[We in the coalition have decided that we need to fight for our right to a wage increase.]

Last May 1, delivery riders from various ride-hailing apps joined a “strike booking” which, according to CUCSSP, impacted stakeholders including Lalamove itself and the DICT.

“Isa sa bunga ng ating sama-samang pagkilos sa pamamagitan ng pag-aaral, konsultasyon, at strike booking, tayo ay makikipagdayalogo sa kinatawan ng DICT at Lalamove Philippines,” CUCSSP said in a statement.

[Due to our collective action through study, consultation, and strike booking, we will engage in a dialogue with the representatives of DICT and Lalamove Philippines.]

The coalition and Gabriela Women’s Party held their second round of consultation with platform workers in discussing the proposed Magna Carta for Platform Workers Bill aiming to provide full protection and support for platform workers in transport network companies (TNS) and transport network vehicle service (TNVS).

According to CUCSSP, there will be a second meeting with Lalamove which will still be supervised by DICT on May 22.

The coalition added that they will further emphasize issues confronting delivery riders such as their demand to reduce the 20% commission rate to 10%, to be provided benefits and health insurance, as well as to recognize their right to organize and unionize.


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