Covid-19: help and advice for delivery drivers

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Safety tips and information for delivery drivers during Covid-19

coovid 19 delivery drivers

The coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19) has disastrous consequences for the economy, and in particular for the delivery drivers of platforms, like Uber Eats ,Postmates, Grubhub, Instacart or Doordash, who do not have the same rights as employees and are not eligible for paid sick leave. They are sometimes forced, for financial reasons, to continue working despite the risks. Here are some tips to do the best during this period.

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⚠️ Attention, the situation and the measures taken by the government evolve daily, the contents of this article can thus be brought to be modified regularly in the coming days.

Health Advice and Safety Coronavirus Tips

The best advice and the most obvious is to protect yourself and the others and avoid spreading the virus. So, if you can, stay at home. Several full time or part time couriers have already fallen sick despite compliance with the health advice given by the government and the platforms, so this advice is not foolproof.

If you choose to continue delivering despite everything, be strict when respecting these advice: by delivering, you are not only exposing yourself to the virus, you are taking the risk of being a factor of diffusion.

Whether you are a food delivery driver or a package delivery driver, Impose yourself constantly respecting the barrier gestures recommended by the government, as well as the following advice more specific to our activity.

  • Keep in mind that contactless delivery is now highly recommended, regardless of the platform.
  • At the restaurant, you must open your bag for the restaurant’s worker to place the order there.
  • At the customer's place open your bag on the doorstep so that he can pick up his order.
  • Avoid close contact with other people (social distancing) at each stage, always stay at least 6ft away from other couriers waiting for their order, at least 6ft from the restaurant’s workers, and at least 6ft from the customer. Even someone who has no symptoms can still carry the virus and therefore spread it around them.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Disinfect your delivery bag using disinfectant wipes or a spray and disposable tissues. Of course, it will be necessary to disinfect the inside of the bag, but also all the external parts that you are brought (or that customers are brought) to touch regularly (handles, closure system, etc.)

👀 The epidemic of Coronavirus (Covid-19) reaches a critical stage in the United States, with more than 2.93M confirmed coronavirus cases and more than 132K deaths recorded (according to official numbers, even if the reality is certainly much more important). In addition the The R number (the number of people that one infected person will pass the virus to is above 1 in almost all the States.

Do not forget the importance of personal protective equipment (PPE).

  • Wear gloves (preferably latex or nitrile, bike or motorcycle gloves do not protect against viruses). Change it as often as possible, and at least every hour.
  • Between each change, wash your hands with the hand sanitizer (hydroalcoholic gel) or, if you do not have one, you can plan to go to work with a bottle of soapy water and a bottle of clear water to rinse your hands.
  • Wear a FFP2 mask at least: FFP1 masks, scarves, handkerchiefs, etc. will protect you from dust, but absolutely not from viruses. Respect the lifespan of disposable masks (from 4 to 8 hours depending on the model): beyond that, their effectiveness is no longer guaranteed.

Finally, in case of symptoms of covid-19 (cough, fever, fatigue ...), do not take anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, which are likely to worsen the infection. Stay at home and call your doctor.

👀 CDC world health organization recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.

In addition physician-confirmed cases of COVID-19 are separately eligible for up to 14 days of sick leave compensation. Basically there are three different coverage plans:

Help From The Delivery Platforms

There are financial aids provided by certain delivery service platforms or their partner insurances. Postmates, Doordash and Uber Eats for example:

For Postmates:

postmates fleet relief fund

Postmates launched the Postmates Fleet Relief Fund to help the fleet cover medical expenses related to COVID-19, regardless of diagnosis.

  1. General Assistance Program (GAP)
  2. COVID Assistance Program(CAP)
  3. Family and ChildCare Assistance Program (FCAP)

Find below the detail of all the help programs and the eligibility requirements:

General Assistance Program (GAP) – no diagnosis required

You can receive credit that can be used on general medical expenses and other wellness products.

Eligibility

  • Completed at least one delivery since Feb. 25
  • Have a Starship HSA account (Sign up for a Starship Account)

If you are eligible for the program the credits will be paid to your Starship HSA account on Friday of the week you applied. Here some important information to keep in mind:

  • The credit is taxable
  • Drivers must apply for the fund by 12pm on Fridays to receive funds that day. Otherwise, they’ll be paid the following Friday.
  • Once your account is credited, you'll receive a confirmation email with this subject line: “Postmates Fleet Relief Fund – Credit Confirmation.”
  • We suggest transferring the funds to your Starship account to reap the tax advantages

COVID Assistance Program (CAP) – diagnosis or doctor ordered quarantine required.

With this found, Postmates would pay Fleet drivers up to two weeks of lost income while they recover.

Eligibility

  • Completed at least ten deliveries since Feb. 25 (applicable to all states except California)
  • Tested positive for Covid-19 (with medical documentation) or quarantine (applicable to all states except California)

If you are eligible, your Fleet account will be credited within 48 hours of approval. The credit will appear in your account with the memo "fleet_covid_fund" and your Fleet account will be deactivated for 2 weeks and we'll reach out at the end of the 14-day period for a medical update.

Family and ChildCare Assistance Program (FCAP) - no diagnosis required.

This is an aid program for Postmates delivery workers affected by Covid-19 to include relief for some parents and caregivers left without childcare or who are caring for sick family members.

Eligibility

  • Must be a California or New York-based Postmate
  • Have completed 70 deliveries on the Postmates platform the week prior to applying for fund (Sunday @ 12am - Saturday @ 12am the week prior to applying)

Application

  • Applications must be submitted by 12pm PST on the Friday of the week you wish to receive funds. Eligible applications submitted after that will be funded the following Friday.
  • The credit will be deposited into your account with the memo “fleet_family_fund.”

For DoorDash:

doordash financial assistance programs

DoorDash recently changed their sick policy and launched a Financial Assistance Program for eligible Dashers in the United States (including Puerto Rico), Australia, and Canada.

Financial Assistant Program

Doordash offers financial support to help gig workers. You may qualify for a one-time payment that's equivalent to your average earnings of two weeks.

Eligibility

The list ot the requirements to qualify for up to two weeks of health-related financial assistance include:

  • You have been active on the DoorDash platform for at least 30 days
  • You have completed at least 30 deliveries in the last 30 days (counting back from the date medical documentation was acquired).
  • You are infected and tested positive for Covid-19 (with medical documentation)
  • You are placed in quarantine by a public health

Application

  1. Go to the Support web form and enter your full name and the email associated with your Dasher account.
  2. Choose Payments in the Category dropdown menu.
  3. Choose Covid-19 Financial Assistance as a subcategory.
  4. In the Description field, please specify how you meet the requirements above.

Dashers Covid-19 Supplies

Doordash care deeply about the safety of Dasher drivers so they created an online store where you can order at no cost and with a shipping costs up to $5 the following product:

  • Hand sanitizer
  • Gloves
  • Masks

The online stores are available in all the countries where Doordash operates. To access at the store you can click on the link below:

For Uber Eats

uber eats covid-19 support for delivery drivers

Uber has announced it had spent $19 million as of mid-May in direct two-week financial assistance to a total of nearly 48,900 drivers worldwide. Its plan provides financial assistance to delivery workers, and helpful resources for rideshare and delivery drivers.

Uber Financial Assistance

The amount of assistance you receive will be based on your average daily earnings over the last six months.

Eligibility

  • You must have taken at least one trip on the Uber platform in the 30 days before March 6, 2020
  • You are infected and tested positive for Covid-19 (with medical documentation)
  • You are placed in quarantine by a public health
  • Your account is momentarily deactivated by Uber as a result of information provided by a public health authority that you have been diagnosed or have been exposed to someone diagnosed with sars cov-2

Uber Work Hub

The work Hub is a new feature of the driver app . Uber helps gig forker find new local job opportunities. Learn about earnings with other companies who may have opening positions. You can find the list of opening positions through the blog.

Uber Covid-19 Supplies

If you are an Uber driver or an Uber Eats delivery partner, you are probably used to receiving Uber support in the Greenlight.

All Greenlight Hubs in the US and Canada until further notice.

State Aid

There are also other financial aids for Gig Workers.

Financial Help For Independent Contractors

While unemployment compensation benefits were usually reserved only for employees who were laid off from their job, under the CARES Act, independent contractors are eligible to receive a government grant.

You are not required to give back this money to the government.

The application process is online. You have to fill out an SBA form requesting an Economic Injury Disaster Recovery Loan.

In order to apply, you will need:

  • Your Social Security number
  • A valid driver’s license or state ID number.
  • You will need to provide your name, address, telephone number, and email address.

The amount of unemployment benefits will depend on what state you are in and what your income has been as an independent contractor.

California for example requires hiring entities with 500 or more employees to provide supplemental paid sick leave to food sector workers for specified reasons related to COVID-19.

Conclusion

Remember that the covid-19 pandemic and the situation are changing every day, very quickly: it is therefore important to stay informed. Drivers can also access information based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC and find delivery workers advice and health official requirements.

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