Assignment: A relatively new concept in business is called the Gig Economy. Independent workers who work by the “gig” or by assignment and are paid by assignment. Uber and Lyft drivers come first to mind. They are paid by the passenger and are not considered employees of the companies. Long-haul truck drivers, package and food delivery drivers, rental services, writers, and graphic artists also fall into this group. These workers are paid by the assignment and typically will work for multiple employers and work only when they want to work.
California recently enacted a law (AB 5) that greatly restricts the ability of companies to classify gig workers as independent contractors. The bill requires these workers to be classified as employees and eligible for state mandated employment benefits (which are some of the most expensive in the nation). The costs of these benefits are mostly paid by the employer.
AB 5 went into effect on January 1, 2020. Uber and Postmates (food delivery service) have already filed suit to block the law from applying to them. So has the California Trucking Association.
1. Do some research on this issue. Discuss – what are people saying in support of the law? What are people saying in opposition to it? What are some alternatives? Discuss both sides and cite your research.
2. Based on your research, discuss from an employer perspective – do you support or oppose this law? Why?