|A Working Courier (yna.co.kr)|
In November, the government announced several measures to prevent the overwork of couriers after several lost their lives from overworking. The number of deaths assumed as death from overwork reached 13 this year. Due to COVID-19 and the efficiency of online shopping, delivery volume heavily increased. As a result, CJ Logistics workers announced a strike ahead of Chuseok, but the government’s mediation ended the strike, and CJ Logistics promised to hire 4,000 additional workers. The government will require companies to set a maximum work time for couriers and an upper limit of the workload. In particular, the government will recommend restricting late night delivery of couriers and encourage a five-day workweek through labor management discussion. Also, couriers are now encouraged to insure themselves with industrial accident insurance. According to existing laws, couriers are special employment workers and can be excluded from insurance. Therefore, the government has restricted the exclusion of industrial accident insurance due to “inevitable reasons” and is going to make a penalty clause in case employers force employees to apply for an exclusion from insurance. The government will organize a Council for Preventing Overwork of Couriers as soon as possible and start social discussions on the measures.