GMB Union has launched a collective grievance on behalf of its members against platform-based private hire firm Bolt. They are seeking to secure paid holiday for Bolt drivers who are engaged on a self-employed basis. There is already precedent for paid holiday in similar gig economy businesses, which according to GMB is an industry standard that Bolt should follow.
Martin Smith, GMB Organiser, said: “It’s a simple fact that Bolt owes drivers for holiday pay. The Supreme Court has already ruled on this and other companies have done the right thing. It’s time for Bolt to stop burying its head in the sand and pay drivers what they are legally owed.”
Uber was forced to pay holiday and pensions to its UK drivers in 2021 following a verdict by the Supreme Court. A Bolt spokesperson claimed “The Supreme Court ruling related to a competitor’s operating model which is different to our own.” They also said Bolt drivers “receive higher earnings per trip and benefit from total flexibility. Our extensive driver engagement shows time and again this model is what the vast majority of our drivers want.”
Despite threatening legal action this summer, GMB has now issued the collective grievance first to allow the company the chance to handle the situation internally, without the need for court action. This mechanism is often an effective means to resolve a dispute.