In response to Prop 22 win in California, 78 groups address Congress to dangers of App-based companies, but Freelancers USA co-leader Kim Kavin fights back hard with facts in response
Last week, McHenry County Blog documented how the Left’s pro-union backers attempted to single-out App-based businesses, like Uber, Lyft, Uber Eats, Doordash, etc with a questionable study released entitled “On-Demand Workers, Sub-Minimum Wages: Evidence from Transportation Network Provider Trips in the City of Chicago” published through the Illinois Economic Policy Institute and the University of Illinois.
The assault against 1099 workers in general and App-based businesses in particular continued this week, proving nothing is “coincidental” in public policy, with the Illinois study on App-based drivers in Chicago and a letter issued late Monday by 78 pro-Labor organizations to Congress’ leadership, the chairs and ranking members of the Senate Finance Committee, the Senate Health/Education/Labor/Pensions Committee, the House Education & Labor Committee and the House Ways & Means Committee.
After the the passage of the California Proposition 22 initiative in November, the pro-labor Leftists targeted app-based businesses, while leaving out non-gig economy workers including freelancers.
Here’s the closing argument from the Left:
“A proposal to supposedly provide limited benefits to some ‘independent workers’ would threaten our most fundamental understanding of what work ought to provide. A federal ‘Proposition 22’-like scheme would shunt more and more workers to piecework labor, performing jobs here-and-there with neither individual security nor the possibility of collective
action. It would create a new avenue for employers to escape liability for discrimination, which would especially hurt groups who have historically suffered on-the-job discrimination and harassment. Disproportionately, women, Black, Latino, Asian, indigenous, and immigrant workers would be left to fight for the scraps.
“The solution is to expand access to our federal employment protections, not to create arbitrary partitions that exclude people who work for large corporations through a digital app.
“We, the undersigned organizations, call on Congress to ensure that all people, whether they work at an office or through an app, may have dignity and safety at work. Rather than inventing an industry-defined category of substandard rights, we need to ensure that all workers can access the benefits and protections of our labor and employment laws.”From letter to Congress, accessed from National Employment Law Project, 1/25/21
Simple discernment would shoot so many holes through the Left’s argument it’d look like Swiss cheese.
Fortunately, someone better at weeding out the truth from the lies of the Left shared their letter in response this morning, the Freelancers USA, through co-leader, New Jersey-based freelancer Kim Kavin.
Freelancers USA is:
“We represent a grassroots, nonpartisan, ad hoc coalition with members all across the United States, and we are asking that you work with us to protect our right to continue earning a living as self-employed, independent business owners.”Freelancers USA letter to Congress, 1/27/21
With introduction aside, here is the meat of Kavin’s response to the pro-union Left:
“This week, we were encouraged to read the letter the AFL-CIO and others sent to you, suggesting that you consider laws affecting ‘people who work for a company through an app.’ This is different messaging than the all-out attack the AFL-CIO in particular has waged since 2019 on independent contractors all across the country. Their prior messaging proposed enacting regressive, 1930s ABC Test legislation that would outlaw most careers among the 70-85% of us who repeatedly say we want to remain independent contractors.
“We understand Congress may be pressured to enact legislation specific to app-based drivers working for companies like Uber. According to research by a member of President Biden’s transition team, such workers comprise less than 1% of the U.S. workforce, and, according to JPMorganChase, such workers represent less than 5% of independent
“Enacting outdated, anti-independent contractor legislation such as the ABC Test to try to solve a perceived problem with such a small group of workers is, as The New York Times reported, like ‘killing cockroaches with a cannon.'”Freelancers USA letter to Congress, 1/27/21
Clearly, the Prop 22 approval in November spooked many in the Left, but as has always been discussed here on McHenry County Blog, the core issue is the use of the ABC Test to classify workers as employees or independent contractors.
Something else McHenry County Blog believes in is full context, so here are both letters to Congress with their underlying research, from the pro-union groups and Freelancers USA: