The coronavirus outbreak is holding the world at ramson, but it may hit people in the gig economy harder when many of them don’t get sick leave or other benefits. Some companies may help soften the blow for some of their staff.
Uber has announced that it would compensate drivers worldwide for both Uber and Uber Eats if they’re either infected by the coronavirus or quarantined by a public health agency for “a period of up to 14 days.”
The transport comapny also said some drivers have already received compensation in “some markets,” alluding to a Bloomberg report that it had compensated quarantined drivers in Mexico and the UK.
A Lyft spokesperson also revealed that it had “decided to provide funds to drivers infected or quarantined by a public health authority.”
It’s very possible there is a broader industry plans afoot. Wall Street Journal sources disclosed Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, Instacart and Postmates are among those discussing a fund to compensate drivers affected by the virus. Although we aren’t sure how it would work as yet, but the group is poised to make a decision in the “coming days.”
Professional analyst note. “While this could be good news for drivers worried that they might get sick, the payouts won’t fully address concerns about pay. Ridesharing drivers and couriers typically don’t make much money from their work, making them particularly sensitive to even brief interruptions — compensating them after the fact could still lead to financial hardship.”
Uber drivers could be tempted to continue working even when they show symptoms of a possible coronavirus infection. And obviously compensation for infections will not offset lost business from declines in tourism and other customers staying home due to coronavirus feras.