Minimum earnings, tip protection proposed for B.C. ride-hailing and delivery workers


The B.C. government has unveiled a set of proposed employment standards for "gig workers" with Uber, SkipTheDishes and other app-based services, including minimum earnings and tip protections.

Under the proposed standards, companies would have to pay workers 120 per cent of the province's minimum wage, not including tips, from the time they accept a ride-hailing or delivery assignment through its completion.

The rate is higher than B.C.’s minimum wage – currently set at $16.75 – because it would not apply to the time spent waiting between assignments, according to the Ministry of Labour.

The proposal would also require companies to show workers what they would earn on a given assignment before they accept, and prohibit companies from withholding or making deductions from a worker's tips.

"The workers who appear at the touch of a button to drive us home or deliver our dinner deserve to be treated fairly," Labour Minister Harry Bains said in a news release Thursday.

"That's why we're taking action to address the problems that the workers themselves raised. We know how important these services are to people in B.C. and our goal is to balance the needs of workers while supporting the continuation of these services."

According to the ministry, gig workers with app-based services have complained about low and unpredictable pay, a risk of being fired without warning, and not having access to workers' compensation coverage if injured on the job.

The province's proposal would require companies to provide ride-hailing and delivery workers with a written reason before suspending or deactivating their account, and create a review process through which a worker could present their own evidence in the event of a complaint.

It would also extend WorkSafeBC coverage to ride-hailing and delivery workers.

Original story by CTV News reporter Andrew Weichel