Italy, Order of the Court of Bologna: Frank is a discriminatory algorithm

31 December 2020 – On 16 December 2019, the workers’ trade unions Filt Cgil Bologna, Filcams Cgil Bologna and Nidil Cgil Bologna asked the Court of Bologna to ascertain the discriminatory nature of both the conditions of access to work sessions through the digital platform and the company conduct and practices put into practice by the company Deliveroo Italia. More specifically, with reference to the first aspect, the mechanism adopted by the platform for the booking of work sections is based on an algorithm that for each rider elaborates a score on the basis of two parameters: reliability and participation. Riders with the highest score have priority in choosing work sessions; riders with the lowest score have little chance of booking work sessions.
According to the trade unions, this mechanism penalises those riders who decide to legitimately abstain from work, such as in cases of strike, disability, illness of a minor child, etc., because the algorithm does not exclude from the calculation of the score abstentions caused by such lawful reasons and, therefore, riders receive a lower score with a consequent reduction in their chances of accessing job opportunities.

On 31 December 2020, the Court of Bologna sentenced Deliveroo Italia srl for discriminatory conduct with reference to the conditions of access to the booking of work sessions through the digital platform.