The sorting of goods depends on manpower and the huge workload leads to the courier’s “death from overwork”. In order to improve the current poor working environment, the Korean Express Union decided to hold a large-scale strike from the 29th.
In 2020 alone, there were 16 cases of couriers “overwork” in South Korea. The South Korean express industry pointed out that “the heavy workload and unpaid sorting of goods is the main reason for the overwork death of couriers”.
In order to fight for the rights and interests of couriers and prevent the recurrence of “overwork death”, the Korean express industry union announced that it would start an indefinite strike on the 29th.
According to JTBC TV on the 28th, in the ecology of the South Korean express delivery industry, after the courier takes over the business from the express company, he mainly carries out two tasks: cargo sorting and delivery (each accounting for half of the workload), but the courier receives only the part of the delivery from the express company, which is time-consuming and laborious sorting in the early stage.
Work is equal to zero pay. After years of negotiations with the express company, the union achieved a historic result under government arbitration on the 21st of this month – signing the “Death of Overwork Response Agreement”.
According to the content of the agreement, South Korea’s major express companies have promised to gradually put into sorting staff, and promoted the introduction of sorting automation equipment, prohibiting the transfer of sorting costs and responsibilities to couriers.
Before completing the automation, the courier company needs to pay the courier the related costs of sorting.
South Korean media said that six days after the signing of the contract, the express industry union pointed out that “the express company did not invest enough sorting staff in accordance with the agreement and did not pay the courier for sorting work, which was an act of breaking the agreement”, and then announced that an indefinite strike would begin on the 29th.
The union in the express delivery industry has entered an indefinite strike, which has made many South Korean online shopping consumers worry about not being able to receive purchased goods on time.