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Uber CEO calls Massachusetts gig economic system poll measure the ‘proper reply’ – TechCrunch


Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi expressed his help Wednesday for a poll initiative in Massachusetts that might hold gig economic system employees categorised as impartial contractors, fulfilling a promise he made practically a yr in the past to push for legal guidelines that preserve its business model.

“Within the state of Massachusetts, we predict the correct reply is our IC+ mannequin, which is impartial contractor with advantages,” Khosrowshahi stated in the course of the earnings name with buyers. “Our drivers find it irresistible. Prop 22 has confirmed to be extremely standard with California drivers.”

His feedback come a day after a coalition of app-based ride-hailing and on-demand supply corporations, which incorporates Uber, Doordash, Lyft and Instacart, filed a petition for the poll initiative that might classify app-based ride-hail and supply employees as impartial contractors and supply them with advantages reminiscent of healthcare stipends for drivers who work at the very least 15 hours per week. The coalition claimed that the availability would enable drivers to earn a minimal of $18 per hour in 2023 earlier than ideas. The poll measure, if it passes authorized muster and receives sufficient signatures, can be included within the November 2022 election.

Proposition 22, a ballot measure that kept gig workers in the state classified as independent contractors. handed in California in November final yr. It additionally exempts gig corporations like Uber from AB-5, the invoice that entitles gig employees to self-classify as staff with standard labor protections that don’t apply to impartial contractors, like minimal wage, sick depart, unemployment and employees’ compensation advantages.

Gig corporations, which largely have but to change into worthwhile, spent $205 million in advertising for this poll measure and made no secret about plans to do the identical factor in different states. Which brings us again to Massachusetts.

Khosrowshahi stated in the course of the earnings name that the overwhelming majority of drivers desire the IC+ mannequin over full-time employment. The Coalition to Shield Staff’ Rights disagreed, arguing that the ballot language has loopholes that might create a subminimum wage for app-based employees and that few would qualify for the healthcare help promised. It additionally famous that the measure would take away anti-discrimination protections, eliminates employees’ compensation guidelines and permits corporations to cheat the state unemployment system of lots of of tens of millions.

“Uber has been utilizing independence as a crimson herring for years,” Shona Clarkson, organizer for Gig Staff Rising, advised TechCrunch. “We all know that drivers don’t even have independence whereas driving for Uber. There isn’t any independence in working 70+ hours every week, not having the ability to set your individual charges, not having the ability to see the place a journey goes and having no actual management at work. The advantages promised underneath Prop 22 had been a sham that haven’t materialized. As a community of over 10,000 gig employees within the state of California, we’ve not seen Uber drivers in a position to entry any significant advantages because the implementation of Prop 22.”

Khosrowshahi stated Californians voted in favor of Prop 22 as a result of that they had driver help, and he sees no purpose why Massachusetts ought to be any totally different.

“We completely desire a legislative final result in Massachusetts, but when we will’t get there we’ll take it to the vote and based mostly on what occurred in California, we’re fairly assured,” he stated.