The Instant Delivery Workplace in D.C.
Local officials and civic leaders in cities across the U.S. and the world are grappling with the unexpected arrival and rapid growth of new food delivery services that use smartphone technologies to dispatch individual workers on-demand. These new services—the most visible of which are DoorDash, UberEats, Grubhub, and Instacart—have attracted significant venture capital investment, media attention, and consumer interest. Yet, the visibility of the industry stands in sharp contrast with the seeming invisibility of the people who work in it. This report asks: What are the working conditions in the instant delivery industry?
Through data examinations from 41 individual workers who participated in the instant delivery workplace in the Washington D.C. area from 2022-2023, this report finds that this new industry poses risks to worker health and safety, subjects workers to unpredictable and variable wages, and requires unpaid work. From these findings, the research team makes recommendations to community organizations, residents, and policymakers for how to address the identified challenges and improve labor conditions in this new industry.
Download the report to learn more about the findings and recommendations.