In Monday’s Californian, Helaine Olen wrote that Proposition 22 passed because people didn’t want the price of gig economy services to go up ("What the fate of two California propositions can tell us about the 2020 election"). But I’m pretty sure that wasn’t the main reason it passed.
I think it was due to the very heavily advertised notion that those who worked as independent contractors would become beholden to a specific schedule dictated by the company, instead of being able to take jobs as their schedules allowed. I personally asked three of these contractors I know how they felt about this proposition, and while only two responded and one was on the fence, the third was very vehemently for it. That tipped me off the fence I was also on to vote “yes.”
I get that they are losing out on a lot of benefits, such as insurance, worker’s compensation and mandated breaks. But the whole reason most people take this kind of work is to earn a bit of extra money and to be able to have flexibility in their schedules. It’s akin to teens taking on jobs like babysitting, tutoring and dog walking. They do it to have extra money beyond allowance and to save for a specific goal like a new game system or an upgraded phone. Adults often need some extra cash to get gifts at Christmas or new clothes: items that are just beyond their current budget. I couldn’t take that freedom away.
Janice French, Bakersfield