Belfast Telegraph

Uber offering drivers sickness and injury cover

Taxi hailing firm Uber is offering its workers a range of benefits such as sickness and injury cover which it says is the first of its kind for self-employed drivers.

The company announced a partnership with the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed (IPSE) which it said will bring a string of benefits to its 40,000 drivers.

Those who join the scheme will have sickness and injury cover, free advice on personal finance issues and occupational accident cover.

Uber said it was the first time a UK operator had made such an offer for self-employed drivers.

Jo Bertram, regional general manager of Uber, said: "Drivers who make money through Uber tell us they love the freedom of being their own boss and choosing if, when and where they drive.

"But drivers have also told us they want more security if something unexpected happens. That's why we're really pleased to offer drivers this package with IPSE so they have more support in case of illness or injury."

Chris Bryce, chief executive of IPSE, said: "IPSE is excited to partner with Uber and the thousands of self-employed drivers who use their app.

"In addition to gaining valuable illness and injury cover, drivers will benefit from being part of the UK's largest voice dedicated to supporting the self-employed community.

"It is part of IPSE's mission to represent all self-employed people and welcoming drivers who use Uber into the fold helps us achieve this."

Maria Ludkin, the GMB union's legal director, said: "It is gratifying to see that Uber has finally acknowledged they have the responsibility of an employer in relation to their drivers, who the courts have already ruled have worker status.

"Therefore it remains puzzling that they are continuing to appeal the employment tribunal judgment of October 2016, where this employment status was confirmed."