NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) Commissioner Vilda Vera Mayuga today announced the first-of-its-kind proposed minimum pay rate for NYC’s more than 60,000 app-based restaurant delivery workers. The proposed rate, if fully implemented, would be $23.82 per hour: a $19.86 base rate, $2.26 to cover workers’ expenses, and $1.70 to reflect the absence of workers’ compensation insurance. Because restaurant delivery apps classify their delivery workers as independent contractors and not as employees, these workers do not receive a minimum wage, expense reimbursement, or other benefits like health insurance and are paid $7.09 per hour on average, excluding tips.
“Delivery workers have delivered for New York time and again, including during the CoViD-19 pandemic — now it is time for New York to deliver for them,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “This new proposed minimum pay rate would help ensure a fairer pay for delivery workers for third-party apps, providing more stability for 60,000 workers across our city. We look forward to hearing public comment on the new proposed rules as we prepare to implement the law.”
“Without delivery workers, many of our most beloved restaurants could not have survived throughout the CoViD-19 pandemic,” said Deputy Mayor Maria Torres-Springer. “This new proposed minimum pay rate will help some of our city’s hardest workers earn a more stable paycheck.”
“Restaurant delivery workers serve our city every day, in all weather conditions, only to earn less than minimum wage with no benefits,” said DCWP Commissioner Vilda Vera Mayuga. “This proposed minimum pay rate would help guarantee delivery workers a more dignified pay and rightfully establish pay equity with other workers who earn a minimum wage.”
The proposed rate, which would be finalized after a public hearing and consideration of public comments, would be $17.87 when it takes effect and would increase to $23.82, adjusted for inflation, when it is fully phased-in on April 01, 2025. It must be paid to delivery workers based on trip time—time spent delivering—and on-call time—time spent connected to the app, waiting for a trip offer. The rate represents the sum of three parts:
- An earnings component ($19.86),whichmatches the NYC Taxi & Limousine Commission’s (TLC) minimum earnings standard for ride-hail drivers.
- An expense component ($2.26),whichreflectsaverage expenses incurred by e-bike workers.
- A workers’ compensation component ($1.70),whichreflects the workers’ compensation benefits that must be provided to comparable delivery workers.
“It is absolutely unacceptable that the restaurant delivery workers who provide for so many in this city are not justly compensated for their time, reimbursed for their expenses, or provided essential benefits,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “Especially since the pandemic began, delivery workers have emerged as essential to the thriving food scene our city is famous for, and it is time that our city shows its gratitude in real, material terms. I am so grateful DCWP Commissioner Vilda Vera Mayuga is championing a proposed pay rate that will support the delivery workers who support our restaurants and all who call this city home.”
“New York City’s hard-working delivery workers deserve fair pay, safe working conditions, and strong protections,” said Speaker Adrienne Adams. “By ensuring a robust minimum pay rate, our City is taking further steps toward fulfilling its promise to ensure dignity and respect for app-based restaurant delivery workers who serve our communities every day. The Council has already enacted unprecedented protections for deliveristas and will continue to prioritize their safety and well-being. I thank the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection for advancing this minimum pay rate and look forward to the next phase of its implementation.”
DCWP released “A Minimum Pay Rate for App-Based Restaurant Delivery Workers in NYC,” a study of pay and working conditions of app-based food delivery workers in New York City that informed the proposed minimum pay rate. The study draws from data obtained from the four largest restaurant delivery apps (DoorDash, GrubHub, UberEats, and Relay), surveys distributed to delivery workers and restaurants, testimony from DCWP’s public hearing, extensive discussions with stakeholders on all sides, and publicly available data.
Key findings from the report include:
- More than 60,000 New Yorkers perform deliveries for a restaurant app on any given week.
- 58% are between the ages of 18-34, 75% are male, and 91% are non-white or Hispanic.
- Workers typically perform deliveries using e-bikes, mopeds, cars, and, to a lesser extent, by walking.
- Restaurant app delivery workers’ pay is low.
- Workers earn an average of $14.18 per hour before expenses, split equally between payments from apps and tips.
- After expenses, workers earn $11.12 per hour with tips, and $4.03 per hour without tips.
- Delivery workers experience the highest injury rates of any industry in New York City.
- DCWP gathered reports of 33 delivery worker fatalities since 2020, including both app delivery workers and restaurant employees.
- 33% of app delivery workers who use e-bikes or mopeds have been physically assaulted while working for a delivery app and 15% have been injured in an assault.
- 29% of app delivery workers who use e-bikes or mopeds and 10% of app delivery workers who use cars have been seriously injured while working for delivery apps.
The public hearing on the proposed rule will be held on Friday, December 16, 2022, at 11:00 a.m. New Yorkers are encouraged to submit public comments here.
Delivery workers, apps, restaurants, and consumers can visit here for information about the hearing, multilingual resources, and information about the City’s Delivery Worker Laws. Workers can also call 311 and ask for “delivery worker” or email OLPS@dcwp.nyc.gov for more information.
About Department of Consumer and Worker Protection
NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) protects and enhances the daily economic lives of New Yorkers to create thriving communities. DCWP licenses more than 75,000 businesses in more than 50 industries and enforces key consumer protection, licensing, and workplace laws that apply to countless more. By supporting businesses through equitable enforcement and access to resources and, by helping to resolve complaints, DCWP protects the marketplace from predatory practices and strives to create a culture of compliance. Through its community outreach and the work of its offices of Financial Empowerment and Labor Policy & Standards, DCWP empowers consumers and working families by providing the tools and resources they need to be educated consumers and to achieve financial health and work-life balance. DCWP also conducts research and advocates for public policy that furthers its work to support New York City’s communities.