Food delivery workers are essential to America. Yet the job often can be thankless, tipless and even dangerous.
The risks are most concerning during the winter months, when food delivery is in high demand due to frigid temps and snowy roads. Delivery drivers in New York who use bicycles to deliver food say that winter is the hardest time for them.
“People don’t understand that in the winter, sometimes we don’t have a good place to rest,” food delivery driver Gustavo Ajche writes for The Guardian. “Sometimes it gets a little quiet, which means we can be out on the street for hours.”
Ajche says that his peers report that they aren’t often allowed to wait inside restaurants, saying that owners will tell them they have to wait on the street.
“A lot of people don’t really think of us as human,” he writes.
That is why Chick-fil-A and its New York City franchise operators have come together to create “The Brake Room,” a rest station for the food delivery community. It is located on the Upper East Side, and anyone who delivers food for apps like Seamless, Uber, Postmates, Grubhub, Caviar or Doordash can enter. You just have to show proof of a recent delivery in the last week, and you are welcome to enter The Brake Room.
Once inside, you can store your bike, charge your phone, use the bathroom, grab a water or coffee, or simply rest and warm up. The Brake Room is free of charge and also offers free Wi-Fi so delivery workers don’t have to worry about missing any alerts.
“We created The Brake Room as a small gesture, a little thing to thank [the food delivery community] for all they do to serve our guests, especially in a market experiencing high demand in sometimes harsh winter weather conditions,” Chick-fil-A’s Senior Vice President of Brand Strategy, Advertising and Media Joe Saracino says in a press release.
The Brake Room will operate for a limited time during the winter, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day of the week except Sunday. It will close for the season on April 13. It is located on 1477 Third Ave. (between E. 83rd St. and E. 84th St.). You can learn more about The Brake Room on the Chick-fil-A website here.