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Rise of food delivery apps in Thailand exposes rights disparity

Maya Taylor

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Rise of food delivery apps in Thailand exposes rights disparity | Thaiger
PHOTO: Samui Times

The owners of the highly popular food-delivery apps are facing growing calls to improve welfare rights for their workers, as more people opt to take on a full or part-time job as a “rider”. Speaking at the online seminar, “When Riders Strike Back”, Akkanut Wantanasombut from Chulalongkorn University says employment law needs to be expanded to cover new roles such as those carrying out deliveries for app-based platforms.

According to a report in the Bangkok Post, there are more than 100,000 such workers nationwide, with approximately 70,000 in Bangkok alone. Akkanut says many delivery platforms categorise these workers as “partners”, which allows them to avoid paying social security for their staff. Workers also say they’re earning less, due to an increase in the number of riders in the business.

Apantee Charoensak left her office role to become a full-time driver and says riders must pay for their own fuel, vehicle maintenance, and insurance. She says while there is a social security fund to cover hospital bills in the event of an accident, all contributions to the fund are from staff, with none from the employer.

“We don’t really know who our bosses are. There’s no one to take responsibility for our employment.”

Another rider, ‘Boy’, says he thought not being regarded as a company employee would be an advantage, in that he would not be constrained by workplace rules. However, he finds himself still obliged to wear the company jacket and attach a cumbersome delivery box to the back of his bike. The unwieldy box often makes it difficult to maneouvre in heavy traffic, posing a risk to safety.

Meanwhile, economist Thanee Chaiwat, also from Chulalongkorn University, says freelancers and similar workers need to be brought into the welfare net, as they do not have a guaranteed income each month and are at high risk of unemployment.

A further challenge is posed by casual workers who don company jackets and carry out deliveries outside of their main office job. Such workers cannot access the social security fund in the event of an accident as the fund is only available to full-time workers. However, it’s understood riders have rejected a proposal that they be paid the minimum wage of just over 300 baht a day, in return for being classed as company employees.

Business has been booming for the delivery apps and services.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Monday, September 7, 2020 at 11:25 am

    If they gave them rights as employees they would be paid more, and cost more because they would receive benefits.
    The delivery costs would go up, and less people would use them.
    In addition, there would be self employed delivery drivers take to the roads and the employed drivers will lose work.
    If I sent a motor bike to pick up food, why should I pay them sickness benefit, insurance, minimum wages, pensions!?
    Many of them can work as taxis, and delivery drivers, and at night dance in the gay bars.
    Never satisfied these Thais.

    lol

    • Avatar

      Rinky Stingpiece

      Monday, September 7, 2020 at 11:38 pm

      “If I sent a motor bike to pick up food, why should I pay them sickness benefit, insurance, minimum wages, pensions!?”

      Well, human rights? Did or do you enjoy those rights? Civilisation comes at a price; but so does barbarism.

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The Thaiger joins forces with Masii to bring you hassle-free Thailand re-entry packages and much more

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The Thaiger joins forces with Masii to bring you hassle-free Thailand re-entry packages and much more | Thaiger

PRESS RELEASE

The Thiager and its sister company Tadoo, have announced they will enter a strategic partnership with the Bangkok-based fintech company, Masii.

Having joined forces with Masii, The Thaiger aims to provide its 6 million-plus monthly users with exclusive deals and packages such as the Thailand re-entry package, comprising of the Certificate of Entry (COE), Covid-19 Travel Insurance and a Covid-19 Test.

Sapir Matmon, of Tadoo, says “This tie-up will allow us to provide our readers with all-inclusive packages specifically designed to make the whole process of coming back to Thailand as simple as possible. And by booking through us, all service fees will be waived – a saving of more than 1,000 Baht. We’re confident you won’t find a better price in the market right now.”

The Thaiger joins forces with Masii to bring you hassle-free Thailand re-entry packages and much more | News by Thaiger

“We can provide everything you need to enter Thailand hassle-free and within 12 hours, which is the fastest in the market.” Says Maxwell Meyer, CEO of Masii.

Covid-19 has drastically accelerated the industry’s movement toward shifting products and services online.

Sapir says “We are tremendously pleased to welcome the Masii team and work alongside Maxwell, as one of the stars of the local fintech scene.”

Tadoo, The Thiager’s sister company, has also teamed up with Masii on their Thai price comparison platform, tadoo.co, which offers a similar range of products including, insurance, finance, internet, and mobile.

The goal of Tadoo is to bring clarity to the Thai market and assist consumers in making better-informed choices by offering a quick and convenient solution for getting the products they want without the hassle.

For more information on the Thailand Re-Entry Full Package, click HERE.

The Thaiger joins forces with Masii to bring you hassle-free Thailand re-entry packages and much more | News by Thaiger

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Aviation authority calling for 20,000 vaccine doses for crew, ground staff

Maya Taylor

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Aviation authority calling for 20,000 vaccine doses for crew, ground staff | Thaiger
PHOTO: Christian Junker on Flickr

The Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand is calling for vaccine doses to protect around 20,000 airline crew and ground staff before the country re-opens to international tourists. The CAAT says it’s vital that those working in the aviation industry are protected and has submitted its request to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration.

According to Suthipong Kongpool from the CAAT, there are around 20,000 airline employees, including crew and ground staff, who will need to be vaccinated. As 2 doses are required, a total of 40,000 doses are needed to fully protect staff. The Bangkok Post reports that the CAAT will meet on Thursday to review the aviation sector’s readiness for when the country re-opens without international arrivals having to quarantine.

Suthipong says they are seeking enough vaccine doses to protect employees of Thai-registered carriers.

“It’s a confidence-building measure for tourists and those providing the services to them.”

From July, the southern island of Phuket will be the first part of the country to waive quarantine for vaccinated international arrivals, subject to 70% of local residents being vaccinated. The “sandbox” project is a pilot programme that will be expanded to other areas if it proves successful. Between October and the end of the year, 5 other provinces – Phang Nga, Surat Thani, Krabi, Chon Buri, and Chiang Mai – are expected to adopt the programme. Officials hope to be able to re-open the country fully from January 2022.

According to the CAAT, the first foreign visitors expected to return to Phuket will be Chinese tourists, given that country’s success in managing the pandemic. Meanwhile, the CAAT says Thailand will see a 7% increase in air traffic this month compared to last, with a total of 36,150 domestic and international flights.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Labour union angry over changes to Thai Airways staff contracts under rehab plan

Maya Taylor

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Labour union angry over changes to Thai Airways staff contracts under rehab plan | Thaiger
PHOTO: Wikimedia

Union representatives are questioning changes made to the employment terms of Thai Airways staff as part of the national carrier’s debt-restructuring plan. The labour union claims the changes have removed or diluted several staff entitlements and welfare benefits, pointing the finger at acting president, Chansin Treenuchagron, who signed the orders.

The union is calling on the Department of Labour Protection and Welfare to review the changes to check if they align with a debt-restructuring plan submitted to the Central Bankruptcy Court. According to a Bangkok Post report, the union believes the signed orders may go against the terms of the rehab plan currently being reviewed by creditors. They include an order related to the company’s new organisational structure, as well as the screening of workers who will continue to be employed by the carrier during and after the rehab process.

Union representatives accuse the airline of changing the terms and conditions of employee contracts, meaning weaker welfare benefits. They are asking the DLPW to confirm if the changes comply with the 1940 Bankruptcy Act, the 1975 Labour Relations Act, and the 1998 Labour Protection Act. The union says that if the changes are found to violate the acts, Chansin should be ordered to cancel the orders and draw up new employment terms that comply with the airline’s rehab plan and with employment law.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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