California judge finds Prop 22 gig worker measure unconstitutional

A California judge has dominated that Proposition 22, the measure that enables firms like Uber and Lyft to maintain classifying app-based drivers within the state as impartial contractors, is unenforceable and unconstitutional. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Alameda County Superior Court judge Frank Roesch discovered that Prop 22 illegally “limits the power of a future legislature to define app-based drivers as workers subject to workers’ compensation law.”

Proposition 22 handed by a large margin within the state when most individuals voted in favor of it in final 12 months’s November elections. Companies have been legally obligated to categorise gig employees as full-time staff beneath Assembly Bill 5 A (AB5), which was handed in 2019, however some (just like the aforementioned ride-sharing companies) continued to deal with them as contractors. Uber, Lyft, Instacart and DoorDash poured over $220 million into campaigning for Prop 22 as a way to overturn AB5, and the transfer clearly labored. 

The measure requires gig firms to supply their contractors with healthcare subsidies and a wage ground, nevertheless it additionally exempts them from having to categorise their employees as staff with acceptable advantages and protections. While these in favor of the proposition argue that it might enable employees to maintain their independence whereas having fun with advantages they did not have earlier than, not everybody’s pleased with the event. A gaggle that features the Service Employees International Union and the SEIU California State Council sued California earlier this 12 months to overturn the proposition. 

In his ruling, Roesch particularly singled out Section 7451 of the measure, which states that any future legislation associated to collective bargaining for app drivers should adjust to the remainder of the proposition. “It appears only to protect the economic interest of the network companies in having a divided, ununionized workforce, which is not a stated goal of the legislation,” he wrote in his choice. He additionally discovered it unconstitutional that any modification to the measure requires a seven-eighths vote of approval to go within the state Legislature.

If the ruling stands, gig firms like Uber and Lyft might must spend a whole lot of tens of millions paying for healthcare and different further advantages for his or her drivers. At the second, although, Prop 22 continues to be in impact, and gig firms are already planning to enchantment. An Uber spokesperson informed The Chronicle:

“This ruling ignores the will of the overwhelming majority of California voters and defies both logic and the law. We will appeal and we expect to win. Meanwhile, Prop. 22 remains in effect, including all of the protections and benefits it provides independent workers across the state.”

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