In 2021, a roundtable between the Ministry of Labour and Social Economy, along with Spain’s most representative trade unions, and employers’ organisations led to the “Riders’ Law”, which introduced a rebuttable presumption of employment for workers on digital delivery platforms. The adoption of the law resulted in a substantive increase in the number of full-time dependent workers in the sector, who gained access to social security systems including sick leave, protections against work-related accidents, unemployment benefits, pension and maternity leave.
Platform companies have adapted in different ways to the “Riders’ Law”. While some have embraced the law's spirit and hired delivery riders as dependent employees, others have shown a strong preference for self-employed and independent delivery riders. As a result of the different responses by companies, there is a pressing callfor stronger enforcement of the law to ensure fair competition.
The case study also explores the implementation of the first ever company level agreement on working conditions in the online delivery sector in Spain. Following the enactment of the "Riders' Law," the trade unions and Global Deal partners CCOO and UGT signed an agreement with Just Eat Takeaway.com Spain, covering over 2 000 workers, including delivery riders and other staff. The agreement addresses various aspects such as working time, hourly wages, trade union rights, and the algorithmic management of work.