Free Workers Union

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By Anna Baum:

"In Germany couriers began organising with the anarcho-syndicalist Free Workers Union (FAU) last year.

The FAU provided a horizontal and open space for the Deliverunion campaign to flourish, mobilising over 100 riders to direct action and winning a pay bonus per km. With no paid staff or organisers, support came from members from other sections, such as primary school teachers and carers, a reminder that unions don’t act or make decisions in themselves but that workers act in their name and with their resources.

The FAU union has gathered a group of developers to create its own online platform, where riders can login to discuss what to include in their collective agreement and vote on it. This tool allows couriers to take an active part in developing demands and making decisions without having to be physically present at union meetings. It is also a mobilising tool, to vote on strike actions and spread messages across the workforce quickly. If digital platforms can connect customers and couriers on demand, then this is an example of how they can be used by unions to help organise “fragmented” workers." (