Urged by requests for protection from some bicycle couriers who proposed an emergency appeal, as per article 700 of the Code of Civil Procedures, the Court of Florence (Florence Labour Court 1 April 2020) first, and then Bologna’s (Bologna Labour Court 14 April 2020) ruled that food delivery platforms have an obligation to provide them with suitable personal protection equipment (“PPE”) against the risk of contagion.

Both of the rulings recognise the existence of fumus boni iuris (grounds for the claim), considering employment with food delivery platforms in the context of article 2 paragraph 1 of Legislative Decree no. 81/2015 with the consequent application of laws related to employment.

Then, in terms of the specific profiles regarding application of the measures and protections regarding health and safety:

  • the Court of Florence refers to the provisions recently introduced by Section V-bis of Legislative Decree no. 81/15, confirming that the customer – in this case the food delivery platform – is required in relation to workers, to comply with laws and regulations concerning the protection of workplace health and safety at its own effort and expense, as per Legislative Decree no. 81/08;
  • the Court of Bologna did not make any referral to this legislation and bases its ruling on the type of activity performed by the bicycle couriers and reasons for protecting both the workers and customers, as per how they result from the emergency legislation.

In addition to the fumus boni iuris requirement, the aforesaid Courts confirm the existence of periculum in mora (imminent and irreparable detriment). This is due to the fact that the performance of the work activity without the aforesaid PPE could expose bicycle couriers, pending a specific ruling, to detriment, including irreparable, of their right to health.