Employment and Industrial Relations Law

Update on the Platform Work Directive

15 May 2024

2 min read

Authors: Ann Bugeja & Christine Borg Millo

On Wednesday 24th April, at the last Plenary session for this term, the European Parliament voted and approved the long-awaited new rules aiming to improve the working conditions of platform workers. The Platform Work Directive was adopted with 554 votes in favour, 56 votes against, and only 24 abstentions.

Firstly, it ensures that all platform workers have their employment status classified correctly, whilst abolishing the presumption of self-employment.  In this way, the burden of proof lies with the labour platform, such as Uber, Bolt or Deliveroo, to prove that there exists no employment relationship between the employee and the labour platform offering the work.

It also protects platform workers from being fired or dismissed based on a decision taken by an algorithm or an automated decision-making system. Instead, digital labour platforms must ensure human oversight on important decisions that directly affect the employees performing platform work. Thirdly, the data of platform workers is regulated more robustly, in that the labour platforms will be forbidden from processing types of personal data, such as data on someone’s emotional or psychological state and personal beliefs.

The agreed text will now have to be formally adopted by the Council of the European Union. After its publication in the Official Journal of the EU, member states will have two years to incorporate the provisions of the directive into their national legislation. Locally, the Digital Platform Delivery Wages Council Wage Regulation Order came into force on the 21st of January 2023 and must comply with the rules outlined in the EU Directive.

For more information on Digital Platform Work, you may wish to access our recent article published on our website.