Restaurant deliverymen. We all cross paths them, especially if you live in a major city. For most of us, our exchanges don’t last much beyond pleasantries and exchanging cash (or a signature, if you ordered on Seamless) for food. Often immigrants, they are some of the most seen and yet most invisible workers in our cities. Few of us have any idea of what their job is like and how hard they work.
Gabriel, a deliveryman for a mac and cheese shop in midtown Manhattan, decided to wear a GoPro to work one day for the Huffington Post to give people a sense of what his average day is like. He works seven days a week for two different restaurants. He earns $7.25 per hour, plus tips.
The details of Gabriel’s employment makes that $7.25 seem even more ridiculous than it already is. He has to pay for his own phone plan, even though it’s required for him to connect with sites like Seamless, which his employers use. He also has to own and maintain his own bike and is responsible if it gets stolen. That sounds awfully similar to how Uber drivers are responsible for their own cars and are liable for insurance.
Meanwhile, there is an ongoing national grassroots campaign to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. New York Governor Cuomo declared last week that he wants to raise the minimum wage so that the state no longer “subsidize[s] the profits” of fast food chains. If you think that people like Gabriel should be able to earn a decent living working five days a week rather seven, go learn more about the Fight for $15 campaign to see how you can get involved.