Vic to boost gig economy worker rights

Workplace protections for Uber Eats drivers and Deliveroo riders are set for a boost as part of changes to be introduced by the Victorian government.

Industrial Relations Minister Natalie Hutchins is on Tuesday expected to announce changes to bring workers with digital delivery platforms under the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act.

As part of the reforms, businesses would be required to pay owner-drivers within 30 days of receiving an invoice or face penalties.

A loophole preventing some of these gig economy workers from accessing the Victorian Small Business Commission and the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal would also be abolished.

The Victorian Wage Inspectorate is to be tasked with enforcing the reforms with $5.5 million provided in the May state budget.

“These reforms respond to changes within the industry and the emergence of online delivery platforms, to ensure the laws that govern these businesses continue are effective and drivers are protected,” Ms Hutchins said in a statement.

She said a review of the Owner Drivers and Forestry Contractors Act had found widespread non-compliance by hirers and brokers, which put workers’ safety and incomes at risk.

Source: AAP GM/JEL