Uber said it has so far spent $19 million assisting almost 50,000 drivers and food delivery couriers who came down with the coronavirus or were forced to self-quarantine. In addition, some 450,000 workers received personal protection equipment (PPE).
Some $50 million was allocated globally to provide PPE for its drivers and delivery people, Uber said in a statement on Thursday (May 21). Over two million workers also tapped the company’s COVID-19 Resources Hub.
To assist people needing additional work, Uber launched its Work Hub last month. Over 200,000 people signed on to work on the Uber Eats platform and 350 joined the freight division. Overall, some 636,000 people accessed the hub to see work opportunities.
The rideshare giant also developed online guides to educate its workers about how to apply for coronavirus relief funds. Uber said in more than one million people worldwide have accessed the guides, which outline government benefits in 28 countries.
Further, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has advocated for gig workers to get the same benefits as employees in any stimulus packages passed.
Like almost every business, Uber has struggled during the global lockdown period that started in March in an effort to contain the virus. Its rideshare business was down 80 percent in April compared to the same period in 2019. Earlier this week, the company said it was planning to cut 3,000 jobs and close 45 offices.
Uber had already announced earlier in May that it was laying off about 3,700 workers. In addition, Khosrowshahi gave up his $1 million base pay until the end of the year.
In the meantime, Uber is trying to acquire rival Grubhub. Talks have stalled several times, but the deal is still said to be in the works. A merger would create a food delivery powerhouse, which has sparked fears about fees.
In an ongoing series by PYMNTS that ranks aggregators, Uber Eats and Grubhub are consistently in the top five.