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.