For immediate release: May. 21, 2020
Contact: Stacey Wells, (866) 450-2648
Moms and students featured in new statewide ad campaign to protect app-based drivers and services
Ads raise awareness that elected politicians are pushing laws and lawsuits that would eliminate 900,000 jobs and jeopardize essential app-based delivery services in the midst of an economic crisis
Sacramento, CA – With qualification for the November 2020 ballot imminent, supporters of the Protect App-Based Drivers & Services Act announced today a statewide television and digital voter education campaign.
Students, parents and other Californians featured in the ads discuss the importance of independent app-based work for them and for the 1 million Californians who choose to drive rideshare or food and grocery delivery. They also denounce efforts by elected politicians that would eliminate 900,000 app-based jobs and essential app-based services in the middle of an economic crisis.
“With what’s going on in the world right now this is my only way of making money,” says Los Angeles area mother, real estate agent and app-based delivery driver Kee Broussard. “I need this independent work and the community needs me. When I hear that some politicians are trying to take independent work away from people and from families, it’s devastating. We need to protect this critical work.”
A new report released by the Berkeley Research Group found that eliminating the ability of Californians to work with app-based platforms as independent contractors would result in eliminating 900,000 jobs, reducing the number of drivers needed in California by 80 to 90 percent. The report also found that most drivers are part time. Approximately 80 percent of all drivers work fewer than 20 hours per week, and most of them work fewer than 10 hours per week. Nearly 1 million Californians are choosing app-based work because it allows them to supplement income or replace lost income which is especially important for Californians recently out of work due to the pandemic.
“I need this kind of independent work and control over my schedule so I can pay my bills and pay my tuition and stay focused in school,” said Isaiah Etuk-Navajo a Los Angeles area student and app-based delivery driver. “I’m delivering food and groceries but it’s so much more than that. Right now people need a hand. Some politicians are putting that all at risk. And it wouldn’t just hurt me it would the people we serve. Politicians just don’t get it. We need to protect this critical work.”
An independent poll released earlier this month found that 71 percent of app-based drivers surveyed prefer to be independent contractors, compared to only 17 percent who would prefer to be an employee. This survey, taken during a global pandemic, echoes results from a similar survey done by the independent Rideshare Guy. Over and over, drivers say they prefer to remain independent contractors by a 4:1 margin over those who want to be employees.
Background – the Protect App-Based Drivers & Services Act would:
- Protect the ability of app-based drivers to remain independent contractors.
- Require new minimum earning and benefit guarantees, including:
- A guaranteed earning of at least an amount equal to 120 percent of minimum wage plus 30 cents per mile compensation toward expenses;
- A new health care contribution;
- Occupational accident insurance to protect against injuries and illnesses on the job.
- Implement new customer and public safety protections, including:
- Recurring background checks of drivers
- Mandatory safety training of drivers
- Zero tolerance for alcohol and drug offenses
- A cap on driver hours per day to prevent sleepy driving