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Women Gig Workers Revolt Against Urban Company, Bangalore. Here's Why.

Beauty workers at Urban Company protested in Bengaluru against favouring new beauticians and complained of long hours without extra pay and the risk of ID blocks.

By Rashaad Ather
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Bangalore Urban Company's Gig Workers

Bangalore Urban Company's Gig Workers

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A group of beauty workers at Urban Company protested at the Bengaluru office due to unfair working conditions. 

The workers, mostly from north-eastern states, complained about having to work long hours with no extra pay, facing the risk of having their IDs blocked for minor reasons and being required to sell company products. 

They find it difficult to commute to distant places for assignments and risk having their IDs blocked if they cancel due to the challenging commute.

The employees also alleged that the company is prioritising new beauticians on the platform, making it difficult for existing partners to get more bookings.

Allegations Of Slave-like Work Conditions:

Workers are protesting against the 'auto assigning' job feature, which they say is like slavery. 

"When I joined Urban Company in 2019, they said it would be flexible working hours and only up to 10 hours a day. Now, they are asking us to work around 13 hours on weekends with no additional incentives. If we skip a single duty due to a personal emergency, they will block us. If our rating falls below 4.8, our IDs will be blocked": said a beautician from a northeastern state.

The system sends them far away from their promised locations, causing financial strain. 

The company's tech features don't account for their situations, leading to termination if they can't work. 

The workers are demanding acknowledgement of their contributions and fair treatment.

Similar protests against the firm were also staged in cities like Hyderabad and Delhi.