On the heels of reports of rampant tax evasion, rising costs and worker shortages, repeal of driver-friendly featuresand attempts to export the failed promises of Prop 22 across the country,California drivers and elected officials will lift the veil on current working conditions for gig workers in advance of Lyft’s annual shareholder meeting
(CALIFORNIA) — With gig economy giants like Uber, Lyft and Doordash attempting to recover from the effects that COVID-19 has had on their balance sheets and workforces, gig workers with We Drive Progress and Mobile Workers Alliance will hold a “State of the Gig Economy” address to expose the hollow core of the industry. The virtual address will take place on June 15 at 10 a.m. and Zoom information can be found below.
This address takes place during a pivotal time for the future of the gig economy. California, where most gig companies are headquartered and which is one of the largest markets for their services, is slated to drastically roll back COVID-19 safety protocols on that date. Meanwhile, Lyft will hold its annual shareholder meeting just two days later.
Drivers from Northern and Southern California will share the challenges gig workers face in the wake of Proposition 22’s passage. Workers will be joined by State Assemblymembers Wendy Carrillo and Miguel Santiago and will share personal, heartbreaking stories of struggle under the uncertain and often unsafe conditions of gig work.
With Uber, Lyft, and other gig companies are reeling in the public eye due to highly publicized reports of tax evasion, rising costs amidst a dwindling pool of workers, bait-and-switch tactics on their employees, and broken Prop 22 promises, app workers are sounding the alarm on the fundamental issues within the gig economy that have been papered over due to venture capital funding and lax regulation. Workers will shine a light on how their employers’ revenue-first policies are disrupting their lives.
Gig work has become increasingly precarious since Prop 22 went into effect in January and the companies’ continued failure to automatically disburse the promised healthcare stipend has contributed to worsening working conditions amid the so-called “driver shortage”.
In addition to sharing their personal stories, drivers and elected leaders have two central demands. First, drivers demand that gig companies automatically disburse the Prop 22 healthcare subsidy to all drivers who meet the requirement for engaged time. Secondly, drivers will demand immediate action by lawmakers and the government, including the swift passage of the PRO Act and for the National Labor Relations Board to reclassify gig workers as employees, entitled to the corresponding rights and benefits of employee status.
WHO: Rideshare drivers with We Drive Progress and Mobile Workers Alliance, State Assemblymembers Wendy Carrillo and Miguel Santiago
WHAT: State of the Gig Economy Address
WHEN: Tuesday, June 15 at 10 AM
WHERE: Online, over Zoom: https://seiu1021.zoom.us/j/83997191962
VISUALS: Virtual meeting, speakers sharing personal testimony, drivers will be available for 1-on-1 interviews
The “State of the Gig Economy” address comes after a set of protests held by drivers in San Francisco and Los Angeles outside Uber offices. Those protests called on gig companies to honor the promises of the Prop 22 campaign and automatically disburse health insurance stipends to all drivers who met the minimum requirements for engaged time working. At Uber HQ in San Francisco, workers were met with security personnel and locked doors.
- 86% of surveyed drivers are ineligible for Prop 22 Healthcare Stipend
- 29% of surveyed drivers report having no health insurance
- 31% of surveyed drivers rely on Medi-CAL for Health Insurance
- 66% of surveyed drivers agree “My app-based employer doesn’t care about me”
Platforms have created barriers to accessing the healthcare stipend that are not mandated by Prop 22, the ballot measure gig companies spent a record-breaking $220 million to pass last year. This could potentially leave tens of thousands of uninsured or working-poor drivers without the promised and heavily-publicized healthcare stipend that Californians voted for last November.
News from We Drive Progress and Mobile Workers Alliance
Andrew Baker, 510-679-8420, Andrew.Baker@seiu1021.org
Kyle Gregory, 213-595-2835,email@example.com
We Drive Progress and Mobile Workers Alliance are part of a coalition of over 24,000 drivers statewide who are responsible for the billions that companies like Uber, Lyft, and their investors pocket every year. We’re uniting to win our union and a better life for ourselves and our loved ones.