Op-Ed: Will voters side with the continued exploitation of gig workers?
For the past half century, employers have increasingly classified their workers as independent contractors. It is said that approximately 8 percent of American workers use independent work as their primary activity, a 22 percent increase since 2001.
More pronounced in trucking, product delivery work like Federal Express, it first emerged in transportation where it is more difficult to monitor worker behavior. But there are other obvious incentives: no social security; no minimum wage or overtime; no unemployment compensation; no sick pay; family leave or workers’ compensation; no reimbursement for travel expenses; registration; insurance; licensing and automobile depreciation; and no protection under anti-discrimination law. A growing precariat, disproportionately Black, brown and immigrants, competing with one another was particularly easy for the new on-demand economy to manipulate.
Opinion: When did we start trusting corporations to draft laws?
Prop. 22 ads do not accurately portray the lives of full-time ride-hail drivers
You can create a lot of influence with $200 million. I don’t know about the rest of you, but my social media feeds and websites are completely inundated with Yes on Proposition 22 ads these days. They show up during commercial breaks. I’ve received text messages. I’ve even seen them on the same webpage as this column.
The future of rideshare drivers in California heats up with Proposition 22
CBS – San Diego
SAN DIEGO — The fight over the future of rideshare drivers is back on the ballot in Proposition 22. Your vote will either keep drivers as employees of the rideshare companies or change them back to independent contractors.
For a more in-depth look at Proposition 22, click here.
Prop. 22 opponents launch caravan to speak out on issue
ABC – San Diego
SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — More than 100 cars pulled out of a downtown San Diego parking lot Wednesday morning hoping to make their voices heard against Proposition 22.
Instacart Asked Its Gig Workers to Distribute Propaganda That Would Hurt Them
“Please retrieve one Prop 22 sticker and insert and place it in your customer’s order.”
Instacart workers were instructed to insert stickers and fliers endorsing a controversial California ballot measure into customers’ shopping bags at a grocery store in Berkeley, California this weekend, causing outrage among some labor activists and gig workers.
The ballot measure, known as Proposition 22, would exempt gig economy companies including Instacart, Uber, and Lyft, from classifying their California workers as employees, allowing them to avoid providing workers with certain protections, such as overtime pay, minimum wage, unemployment insurance, and the right to unionize—as required by AB5, a law that went into effect in January. This means, in effect, Instacart was forcing precarious contract workers to advocate against their own interests.
Opinion: Gig companies want to change the rules about who qualifies as an employee. Here’s why they’re wrong
The hardware store down the street has to pay minimum wage, the dry cleaner pays unemployment taxes and the diner buys workers’ compensation insurance. Mom-and-pop businesses have managed to make a living while following basic workplace laws for decades. Yet the creative disrupters in Silicon Valley who run Uber, Postmates and other “gig” companies say they can’t make a go of it following the same rules as everyone else.
Instead, gig companies are urging Congress and state lawmakers to create a new category of worker, without the full protections that employees receive. But like all other businesses, gig companies should be required to treat their workers as employees, not as independent contractors or any other designation.
Dolores Huerta: I know justice when I see it
For more than 60 years now, I’ve devoted my life to fighting for the rights and dignity of hard-working people. We’ve fought against efforts to cheat them out of their wages, to endanger them with unsafe working conditions and to generally treat them as invisible.
After all this time, I know injustice when I see it.
Today, when I look at Proposition 22, I see injustice. I see an effort by a single industry to permanently create an entirely new category of second-class workers – workers who would be forever deprived of the rights and benefits that we’ve fought so hard to attain for all other workers here in the Valley and across California.
Opinion: Uber is attempting to colonize the California government
If you live in California and own a smartphone, or a television, or a mailbox, or a functioning pair of eyes, chances are you have seen ads endorsing the Prop 22 ballot initiative in the state. Uber, Lyft, Doordash, Postmates, Instacart, and other “gig” companies have spent about $186 million so far to trick Californians into voting for this atrocity — by far the most that has ever been spent on any ballot initiative in American history.
Democrats accuse tech companies of deceitful tactics in campaign against Calif. ballot measure
Democrats are accusing app-based gig companies including Uber and Lyft of playing dirty in their multimillion-dollar ad campaign supporting a California ballot measure that would allow their drivers to continue to be treated as independent contractors rather than employees.
California state Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D) said Monday that the campaign backing Proposition 22 includes tactics that are “dirtier than I’ve ever seen before,” such as buying up “fake groups” that have no actual members and misleading names meant to tie them to progressives such as Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).
The Future of the Gig Economy Is on the Ballot
California’s Prop 22 would make the misclassification of Uber and Lyft drivers permanent.
I’m a writer. I’m also a part-time bicycle courier for UberEats, Postmates, and Caviar in New York City: a job that I do on the side, on my own schedule. I am the mythical “independent contractor” Silicon Valley platform capitalists like Uber cite to justify California Prop 22, which, if passed in November, could permanently exclude delivery and rideshare workers from employee status—and therefore deny them the rights and protections they deserve.