March 30, 2020

Some Indiana Instacart Workers Participate in National Strike, But Feel Conflicted

Original story from   IPBS-RJC

Article origination IPBS-RJC
Some Indiana Instacart Workers Participate in National Strike, But Feel Conflicted - Justin Hicks

Some Indiana Instacart Workers Participate in National Strike, But Feel Conflicted

Justin Hicks

Personal shoppers for Instacart, a service that sends personal shoppers to pick up groceries for users, are on strike across the country.

They're asking for personal protective equipment and better pay. Some workers in the state are joining the strike, but feel conflicted about leaving vulnerable people without groceries during the COVID-19 outbreak. 

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Deirdre Hesser in northwest Indiana has shopped for Instacart for two years and decided to strike. She says the company isn’t providing masks, gloves, or hand sanitizer. And while demand is surging, she says the company is forcing workers to fulfill multiple orders for the same pay as just one. 

“We are only getting $7 to shop for three different people,” Hesser says. “Instead of Instacart stepping up and being like ‘Hey let’s throw you guys some extra money for these’, they haven’t done anything.”

Laura Thompson in Evansville also shops for Instacart and agrees the pay needs to be improved. As an independently contracted worker, she doesn’t mind supplying her own PPE. She says she will probably still take orders Monday because many of her customers are elderly or can’t leave home. 

“What if these doctors and nurses decided they’ve had enough and they’re just going on strike?” she says. “That’s the other part that makes me feel guilty.”

Contact Justin at jhicks@wvpe.org or follow him on Twitter at @Hicks_JustinM.

This is a rapidly evolving story, and we are working hard to bring you the most up-to-date information. However, we recommend checking the websites of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Indiana State Department of Health for the most recent numbers of COVID-19 cases.

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