The B.C. government is capping restaurant delivery service fees to 15 per cent of the bill, starting Dec. 27.
Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth announced the temporary cap Dec. 22, citing the province’s long-running state of emergency due to COVID-19. That allows Farnworth to make a ministerial order, rather than pass legislation as had been urged by the B.C. Liberal opposition. Both parties campaigned on the proposal to rein in delivery companies that have charged as much as 30 per cent.
“This will be in place for as long as the state of emergency in place, plus three months,” Farnworth said, adding he expects the COVID-19 situation isn’t likely to abate soon.
Ministry statistics show the impact of pandemic restrictions on industry employment. September 2020 employment in food and drinking establishments was 150,260, down 25 per cent from the same month in 2019.
The order includes a provision to maintain the pay for delivery jobs such as Doordash and Skip the Dishes that have grown rapidly with inside service restrictions. That includes tips, “if the food delivery service provider collects an amount designated as a tip or gratuity,” the order states.