Munchies Drive the Gig Economy in Denver: GoPuff Delivery Driver Sues for Thousands of Drivers Allegedly Denied Minimum Wage and Overtime
By Kate McKee Simmons
Today, Denver’s Austin Shockley filed a class action lawsuit seeking unpaid minimum wage and overtime for thousands of delivery drivers working across the country for the online convenience store goPuff.
With a few clicks on a cell phone app, goPuff allows customers to order not only chips, ice cream, candy, and other snacks, but also marijuana paraphernalia, like “vaporizers, rolling papers and grinders.” Mr. Shockley says these conveniences are offered on the backs of delivery drivers, like himself, who are illegally classified as independent contractors and not paid overtime. Indeed, after expenses like gas and wear and tear on his vehicle, Mr. Shockley alleges that he did not even receive minimum wage for the hours he worked. He alleges that when he complained to goPuff’s CEO about his unpaid wages, he was fired.
“Gig economy innovators like goPuff can be great for consumers and workers alike,” said Nina DiSalvo, Executive Director of Towards Justice, the Denver-based legal non-profit representing Mr. Shockley. “But they can’t skirt employee protections under the guise of innovation.”
The case was filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, where goPuff's corporate headquarters is located. Plaintiff is represented by Towards Justice and Nichols Kaster, PLLP.