Lawmakers in California have passed a landmark bill that would make it much more difficult for companies such as Uber and Lyft to classify workers as independent contractors rather than employees.
The bill, which paves the way for workers in the so-called gig economy to get holiday and sick pay, has garnered attention across the US and beyond, largely owing to the size of California’s workforce.
California legislators are set to decide on legislation that would fundamentally change the way tech giants like Lyft and Uber engage with workers.
Assembly Bill 5 would change the way businesses classify employees and dramatically expand protections for gig workers. If it passes, the legislation would represent a big win for labor advocates across the state.
“This bill not only does important things immediately for workers, but also sets a framework for the future we think is really important,” said Steve Smith of the California Labor Federation.
Dozens of drivers for Uber and Lyft attempted to shut down streets in San Francisco on Tuesday, demanding the right to form a union and calling on state governments to pass a new bill supporting gig worker rights.
Lyft and Uber drivers from across California came in a 70-plus caravan to speak out in favor of Assembly Bill 5, known as AB5. Lyft and Uber have spoken against AB5, which would classify drivers as employees and enact basic worker protections.
While those taking a taxi from Manhattan to John F Kennedy airport this summer can expect a 90-minute-plus crawl at rush hour, more elite New Yorkers will have access to a new eight-minute ride – with a familiar brand attached.
Scheduled to launch on 9 July, UberCopter – yes, that Uber, will offer a helicopter service between a heliport adjacent to Wall Street and JFK, from $200 per person each way.
One month into driving for Lyft around Atlanta, Alicia Dukes was sexually assaulted by a passenger on 21 April after she drove him to a gas station and back to his apartment.
Uber is under investigation by US and foreign tax authorities, the company confirmed on Tuesday, saying it could face charges in key markets including the UK.