Watch as Just Eat delivery drivers blockade KFC on Queens Road, Sheffield, over pay dispute

Striking delivery drivers staged a second blockade of a high-profile fast food outlet in Sheffield as they ramp up the pressure over pay.

Monday, 7th February 2022, 12:40 pm

Couriers blocked a KFC drive-through on Queens Road, set off smoke canisters, hooted car horns and chanted ‘Just Eat, Stuart, you can’t hide, we can see your dirty side!’ while waving banners demanding a pay rise.

The protest on Sunday dragged a second global food company into the increasingly bitter dispute.

WHO EMPLOYS THE DRIVERS?

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Couriers began striking on December 6, after Stuart Delivery cut the minimum delivery pay by 24 per cent, from £4.50 to £3.40.

Last week drivers blockaded a McDonald’s in Woodseats. It kicked off a week of direct action against their employers Stuart Delivery - a sub-contractor to Just Eat - targeting clients and affiliates of the company, which is owned by DPD, part of French postal service La Poste.

On Thursday, couriers posted video of them occupying London’s largest DPD depot. Some 23 MPs have backed a motion in Parliament and 1,300 people have signed letters in support of the campaign, according to the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB)

WHAT IS THE STRIKE ABOUT?

Couriers began striking on December 6 after Stuart Delivery cut the minimum delivery pay by 24 per cent, from £4.50 to £3.40.

Couriers blocked a KFC drive-through on Queens Road, set off smoke canisters, hooted car horns and chanted ‘Just Eat, Stuart, you can’t hide, we can see your dirty side!’ while waving banners demanding a pay rise.

The IWGB hopes that by dragging McDonald’s and KFC into the dispute Stuart Delivery will be embarrassed into meeting their demands.

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The union says it has already won two: paid waiting times and a resolution to an insurance issue that was resulting in wrongful terminations. It is still calling for a reverse to the pay cut and to implement a hiring freeze in Sheffield.

The Star contacted Stuart, Just Eat and KFC for comment.

The IWGB says it has already won two of its demands: paid waiting times and a resolution to an insurance issue that was resulting in wrongful terminations

WHAT HAS MCDONALD’S SAID?

Last week, a McDonald’s spokeswoman said they were liaising with Just Eat.

She added: “While this dispute does not concern McDonald’s directly, we continue to liaise with Just Eat on the matter and understand they are working closely with Stuart to help find a resolution.”

Striking delivery drivers have staged a second blockade of a high-profile fast food outlet in Sheffield as they ramp up the pressure over pay.

Brendan Hamill, Stuart Delivery UK managing director, said the action by a ‘small number’ of couriers was ‘unnecessary and counterproductive’.

He added: “All couriers using Stuart’s platform are given equal opportunity to voice their concerns with us.”

Paul Blomfield, MP for Sheffield Central, said the strike was helping to challenge the entire gig economy which was ‘exploiting too many people in too many jobs’.

And he hoped it would inspire others to challenge similar employment practices across the country.

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