By Jaime Gaines
I’ve been dashing since the spring of 2020, right as the pandemic took hold of our economy and our impacted ability to go to work.
At the time, I was pregnant and looking for safe, reliable and flexible ways to support our family’s financial needs, particularly supporting my husband’s dream to prepare for medical school to become a pediatrician.
As a stay-at-home mom, the ability to earn money on my own schedule with DoorDash has been a game changer for our family.
In all, I’ve made nearly 900 deliveries in the Spokane area, working just four to five hours a day a few days a week. These deliveries helped families stay home and healthy, supported local small businesses and allowed my family to realize our goals for the future.
Most importantly, dashing allows me to be the mom I want to be, making my work fit around my daughter. I don’t ever have to worry that prioritizing her over my job will have adverse impacts on my employment. And I can take the work wherever I go.
I recently learned that the Spokane City Council is putting forward a policy to set price controls for third-party delivery apps, which could have unintended consequences for workers like myself and the restaurants and customers that rely on the service I, and so many others in Spokane, provide.
Limiting the costs that businesses can pay could end up costing customers more, which concerns me. When delivery prices for customers increase, it can reduce the number of orders available for me to pick up, therefore making it much more difficult for Dashers like me to earn money.
Restaurants already have options – with commissions as low as 15% – for what level of service they choose with delivery platforms like DoorDash and have the option to not offer delivery through these platforms at all.
It’s no secret that small business owners are struggling due to higher costs for goods and inability to fill their workforce needs. As someone who was proud to help our mom-and-pop restaurants stay afloat through delivery orders throughout the two years of lockdowns, I believe Dashers are needed now more than ever.
We’ve come a long way and platforms, like DoorDash, are bringing us even further by providing flexible, safe and reliable work for people like me.
I urge the Spokane City Council to set the fee cap legislation aside and find other solutions that help everyone in Spokane.
Jaime Gaines is a Spokane resident who has worked for DoorDash since April 2020.
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