“Tragic Crash Claims Life of Uber Eats Rider, Akshay Deepak Doultani: A Promising Finance Student’s Dream Cut Short”

By | July 31, 2023

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A 22-year-old Uber Eats rider, Akshay Deepak Doultani, was killed in a collision with an SUV while making a delivery in Sydney. Doultani, a finance student from India, had come to Australia on a scholarship to secure a better future for his family. Labor senator Tony Sheldon identified Doultani as the rider and highlighted the lack of employment rights and protections for gig workers. The government is considering reforms to better protect gig workers, but the business lobby and gig economy companies are opposing these changes. The Transport Workers’ Union emphasized the need for fair rights and safe working conditions for all workers. Christopher Knaus reported

Tragic Death of Uber Eats Rider Sparks Urgency for Gig Worker Reforms

Last weekend, 22-year-old finance student Akshay Deepak Doultani lost his life in a fatal crash while working as an Uber Eats rider in Sydney. Doultani, who hailed from India, was studying for his master’s degree in finance at Macquarie University on a scholarship that he had received to pursue a better future for his family. The collision occurred in Epping, Sydney’s north-west, when an SUV collided with Doultani’s scooter while he was making a delivery.

Labor senator Tony Sheldon, with the permission of Doultani’s family, identified him as the rider and highlighted the lack of basic employment rights for gig workers. Sheldon also revealed that 12 food delivery riders have lost their lives since 2017, although underreporting is common in the industry. As gig workers, they are denied minimum wage, workers’ compensation, and other essential protections.

The Australian government is currently considering reforms to the gig worker industry to address these issues and provide better protection for workers. These reforms would establish minimum pay and conditions and give the Fair Work Commission the authority to regulate “employee-like workers.” However, the business lobby and gig economy companies have opposed these changes, arguing that they will increase costs and lead to job losses.

The tragic incident has prompted calls for urgent action from the Transport Workers’ Union (TWU). TWU national secretary, Michael Kaine, emphasized that all workers, regardless of their gig economy status, deserve fair rights and safe working conditions. The death of Doultani serves as a heartbreaking reminder of the need for immediate reforms to protect the rights and safety of gig workers.

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Uber Eats has expressed deep sadness over the incident and has been in contact with Doultani’s family, offering support. The company has policies and features in place to enhance the safety of its delivery people, including insurance coverage for accidents or injuries that occur while on the job. The investigation into Doultani’s death is currently being conducted by the police and the state’s work safety watchdog, Safework. Uber Eats has offered assistance to the authorities and is expediting the insurance process for Doultani’s family..

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