Irish start-up Gigable offers gig economy workers paid leave cover

Irish start-up Gigable has joined forces with Collective Benefits, a European insurance and benefits platform for gig economy workers, to offer its members paid leave cover.

Gigable is a gig economy marketplace app for delivery workers, with more than 30,000 members in Ireland and the UK. It connects businesses with independent workers such as delivery drivers, who can accept jobs, send invoices, communicate and receive payments through the platform. Workers are given full shifts as opposed to ad-hoc work.

The new paid leave benefit covers sickness, injury and compassionate leave. It will be offered to workers who complete a minimum of 15 gigs in a month on Gigable.

Irish gig economy workers are not currently entitled to employment benefits such as sick pay or accident coverage. The Health and Safety Authority has released its new Strategy Statement for 2022 to 2024, which in part outlines proposed actions for the gig economy.

Meanwhile, the EU has released a draft proposal on strengthening gig worker rights. The proposal includes recommendations that member states ensure adequate social protection including benefits for gig workers when it comes to illness and accidents. MEPs called for the legislation to be updated last year.

Gigable’s CEO and founder, John Ryan, said his company is “here to build an equitable gig economy community,” adding that it is “vital that workers are not simply treated as commodities”.

“Our partnership with Collective Benefits is helping Gigable achieve our core purpose – to humanise the gig economy. We’re thrilled to provide this suite of cover, which is actually more substantial than what is currently offered to many traditional employees.”

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Collective Benefits’ CEO, Anthony Beilin, noted that the gig economy has become a popular working option because of the flexibility it provides. But he added that self-employed workers “shouldn’t have to choose between flexible work and the financial, physical and mental support they deserve”.

Gigable’s drivers already have access to digital GP services, mental health support, financial advice and everyday savings on food and fuel. These are also provided through a partnership with Collective Benefits.

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