Just two years after losing a court battle to prevent its drivers being classed as workers, Uber seems to have upped its employee protection game. The minicab app is trialling free childcare for drivers in the UK as part of efforts to encourage more parents of young children to sign up to work. And it is part of a growing number of businesses with work childcare benefits.
Uber’s work childcare benefits
Uber announced it is offering ten hours of free childcare for 1,000 of its UK drivers.
The company said its drivers on average earn £34 an hour in London and £30 across the rest of the country. But, opportunities for the highest earnings are usually at weekends and evenings. And childcare commitments prevent some parents from working at those times.
Uber UK general manager Andrew Brem said: “Over the last year I’ve spoken to many ambitious and hardworking drivers who told me that support with childcare would help them to earn more.
“The cost of childcare is often a barrier for women in joining Uber, which is why we have launched an innovative new pilot for drivers.”
Why we need work childcare schemes
A report by charity Coram published last week stated that Britain is one of the most expensive places in the world for childcare. The average price of a part-time childcare place (25 hours) a week for a child aged under two in a nursery is £148.63. In many cases, this prevents parents from entering the job market. It is often not worth their while working after taking away childcare expenses.
Other businesses offering childcare
Here are some of the other companies providing work childcare benefits in the UK.
The tech giant provides a nursery facility onsite for its workers at its Bedfont Lakes offices in Feltham. The award-winning nursery looks after employees’ children from the age of three months to five years. It’s not free, but apparently “significantly reduced” from the price of regular childcare.
The bank provides heavily subsidised childcare for employees in its offices in Leeds and Glasgow. Workers can pay per hour rather than just half or full days, meaning they don’t pay more than they need to.
Dads and mums at the streaming service can take as much time off as they need in the first year of their child’s life, whilst still earning full pay. After that, the company encourages them to choose work patterns that fit around their responsibilities at home.
Do you get any work childcare benefits? Let us know in the Comments below