Establishing a Slave Economy

Sick DPD couriers face £150 charge if unable to find cover

Drivers who deliver for M&S, John Lewis, Amazon and others say they sometimes force themselves to work when ill

Couriers who deliver parcels for Marks & Spencer, River Island and John Lewis face being charged £150 a day if they cannot find cover when they are ill.Drivers for the multinational company DPD, which also makes home deliveries for Amazon and Asos, told the Guardian the contractual threat meant they sometimes forced themselves to work when sick.

One driver in the east of England said his manager charged him £150 last year when he couldn’t work because of an upset stomach.

“I said I couldn’t come in because I was too sick and it wouldn’t have been safe for me to drive,” said the driver, who did not wish to be named. “He said: ‘Sorry, I have to charge you.’”