A member of the public, Mok Yew Kee, wrote to Straits Times Forum which was published today (24 Mar) showing his concerns for the food delivery riders.
“A food delivery rider is not an employee of the service provider (which may be GrabFood, Foodpanda or Deliveroo); he is an independent worker who does not get any employment benefits such as employer contributions to his Central Provident Fund (CPF) account, medical leave and paid annual leave,” Mr Mok noted.
“No work means no pay for him.”
He wonders if the riders would still be able to do the same number of deliveries and earn the same amount of money when they get older or when they are not as physically fit.
“With no compulsory CPF contributions, do they have adequate savings for old age?” Mr Mok asked.
“It seems that more Singaporeans in their 20s or 30s are becoming food delivery riders. Is this a trend that Singapore should be concerned about when its local manpower is a scarce resource?”
Drivers took Uber to court in UK
Indeed, riders do not get any CPF since they are not considered to be full-time staff. It would be difficult for them to retire without any CPF when they get old.
In Singapore, it has been reported that some 400,000 Singaporeans between age 55 to 70 currently don’t have enough in CPF to meet the Basic Retirement Sum.
People without adequate money for retirement will need to work till they literally drop dead. The alternative of course, would be to sue their children if the children don’t give allowance to their parents in order to subsist.
Meanwhile, UK Supreme Court ruled last month (Feb) that Uber drivers would now be considered workers employed by the firm rather than self-employed contractors.
Following the Court decision, Uber in UK announced last Tue (16 Mar) that 70,000 of its drivers will be paid the minimum wage, get a pension and receive holiday pay.
It’s not known if the riders in Singapore would likewise take the food service providers here to court in order for the service providers to consider them to be full-time employees too with CPF.