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A Delivery Worker Dies Every Month in the U.S.

This summary about delivery workers in NYC was featured in Documented’s Early Arrival newsletter. You can subscribe to receive it in your inbox three times per week here.

Every month in the United States, roughly one delivery or rideshare worker dies on the job. Here you’ll find a map of locations of workers in this industry who died in the last year in NYC alone.  

Documented’s community correspondents Rommel H. Ojeda and April Xu report that deaths and injuries have raised alarming concerns from delivery workers who joined the NYC industry after losing their jobs during the pandemic. 

The workers report incidents of harassment and mistreatment and say app companies like Uber, Lyft and DoorDash have come short in offering protections and compensation for tragic accidents. As such, they feel unsafe on the job. 

Lack of insurance to bury the dead: There are 65,000 app-based delivery workers. Their status as independent contractors means they do not qualify for compensation or protections given to employees under the federal labor law. 

When Zhiwen Yan, 45, died last month after being shot while doing deliveries, his wife, Eva Zhao, 37, was left to figure out how to cover the burial expenses and take care of their three children, ages 2, 14 and 15. 

He received help from Queens residents, who set up two GoFundMe pages for the funeral and for donations to help the family. But advocates say “these donations are just a drop in the bucket, considering the family has a long way to go.” 

Just last week, workers and family members of deceased workers called for better protections as they gathered to mourn the lives of 12 victims. 

Read the full report exclusively on Documented.

STORIES WE ARE FOLLOWING 

New York

CMP launches recovery fund for 22-year-old Aaron Hu, a victim of the Brooklyn subway shooting: Hu, shot five times on both legs, now needs at least 8 months in rehabilitation, but his age has posed complications for finding a facility. — Read more

Citizens and LISC NYC launch grant for small businesses: A survey found minority-owned small businesses lost nearly one-third of their workforce and 40% didn’t get PPP assistance. — Read more, & find locations for lottery ticket pick-up.

City survey finds there is almost no low-cost housing left: Availability for the city’s lowest-cost apartments is at a 30-year low, and incomes would need to double to afford rent of vacancies. — NBC New York

Around the U.S. 

Daughter of man who died by suicide in ICE detention sues ICE, GEO Group: The lawsuit, filed on the second anniversary of the 74-year-old’s death, seeks justice and accountability for his torture and death in a solitary confinement cell. — Centro Legal

Nine ICE detainees go on hunger strike, fearing COVID spread: The protesters at the Washington facility want better cleaning, food, access to medical services and minimum-wage jobs. — AP News

Civil rights complaint alleges Iranian scholar denied entry into the U.S. based on race: Harvard Law School’s Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program filed a lawsuit for the Canadian researcher scheduled to start a fellowship at Harvard Medical School. — AP News

Washington D.C.

Acting ICE director argues for proposed cuts to detention beds: Tae Johnson defended Biden’s request for alternatives to detention programs as “more humane” and “an effective and significantly less costly option”. — Roll Call

Homeland Security secretary tours border days before Title 42 is set to end: Although a federal judge may order pandemic-related asylum limits to continue, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said authorities are prepared for an expected increase in crossings. — AP News

Expert hired to run DHS’ new disinformation governance board resigns: Nina Jankowicz resigned after DHS paused the board, which was created to curb disinformation about migration into the U.S. Jankowicz had been criticized for her old social media posts. — CNN

SEE MORE STORIES
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