Prop 22 puts the ‘future of labor’ at stake – ProWellTech
Welcome back to Human Capital, where we look at the latest in technology work, diversity and inclusion.
As Election Day is fast approaching and as California’s Prop 22 puts the “future of work on the line,” as Vanessa Bain, Instacart collaborator and co-organizer of the Gig Workers Collective, told ProWellTech this week, we are paying close attention to this voting measure. Concert companies like Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, and Instacart have invested more than $ 180 million in Prop 22, which seeks to keep their drivers and delivery workers classified as independent contractors.
Before entering, a friendly reminder that Human Capital will soon be a newsletter… starting next week! Sign up here to not lose it.
Instacart began asking workers to distribute Yes to Prop 22 propaganda to customers
Vanessa Bain, Instacart buyer and co-founder of Gig Workers Collective, tweeted about how she was asked to distribute Yes on 22 stickers to customers. Many people, including Bain, have wondered whether it was legal or not.
Instacart, however, told CNN the initiative was allowed under the campaign’s funding rules. Moreover, I contacted the Fair Political Practices Commission, but Communications Director Jay Wierenga told me that “only an investigation by FPPC Enforcement (or a DA or the office of the AG) determines whether anyone or a group has violated the Political Reform Act “.
What is clear, however, is that it goes against what many workers want. We actually caught up with Bain prior to the relaunch of ProWellTech Mixtape, where she discussed why she is against Prop 22. The episode goes live next week, but here’s a little teaser from our conversation:
“The future of work is at stake,” Bain told us earlier this week. “I would also say the future of our democracy. The reality is, you know, it sets a dangerous precedent for allowing companies to write their own labor laws … This policy was created to unilaterally benefit companies at the expense of workers. “
Hundreds took to the streets of San Francisco to protest Prop 22
In San Francisco, there has been a massive outcry against Prop 22. Although Prop 22 would provide more benefits than workers currently have, many drivers and delivery workers say it’s not enough. For example, Prop 22 would institute health benefits, but it falls short of comprehensive health care.
Speaking of SF, 76% of app-based workers in the city are people of color
And 39% are immigrants, according to the latest gig worker survey conducted by the local agency’s training commission and UC Santa Cruz professor Chris Benner.
This study surveyed 259 workers who drive or deliver for DoorDash, Instacart, or Amazon Fresh. Other findings were:
- 71% of workers get at least 3/4 of their monthly income from concert work
- 57% of workers completely rely on concert work for their monthly income
- On average, workers earn $ 450 a week. After spending, that average drops to $ 270 per week.
The California appeals court heard the arguments in Uber’s worker classification case, Lyft
Judges at the CA 1st District Court of Appeals heard arguments from Uber and Lyft as to why they should be able to continue classifying their drivers as independent contractors. The hearing was the result of a district judge granting a preliminary injunction that would force Uber and Lyft to immediately reclassify their workers as employees. Uber and Lyft, on the other hand, have appealed the sentence and now here we are.
As Uber and Lyft have argued, drivers would lose flexibility if forced to be addicted. an appeals court judge asked which part of AB 5 would require companies to remove that flexibility. Spoiler Warning: There is nothing in AB 5 that requires such a thing.
But a Lyft attorney, who said he would leave California if he was forced to reclassify his workers, said he doesn’t “want the court to think that if the injunction is upheld, these people will continue to have these revenue opportunities because they won’t. “
Uber’s survey of workers on Proposal 22 shows strong support for the vote measure
But it’s important to note that of the more than 200,000 Uber drivers in California, only 461 workers participated in the study. Uber conducted this survey from September 23 to October 5 to see how drivers felt about Prop 22 and being an independent contractor. In that poll, 54% of respondents said they would definitely vote yes out of 22 if the elections were held today, while 13% said they would definitely vote no.
Respondents also assessed whether they prefer to be independent entrepreneurs. 54% of respondents said they strongly prefer to be an independent entrepreneur, while 9% said they strongly prefer to be an employee.
This week, Uber also encouraged bikers to talk to their Prop 22 drivers to see how they feel about it.
“First of all, the Proposition 22 conversation should be about what workers actually want,” an Uber spokesperson said in a statement. “That’s why we encourage anyone who uses Uber or Uber Eats to ask their driver or delivery person what they think of the Prop 22.”
Based on the wording of the in-app message, Uber seems confident that most drivers support the Prop 22.
Facebook and Twitter ban Holocaust denial posts
Both Facebook and Twitter took a step forward in their battles against hate this week by removing posts denying the Holocaust, the systematic, state-sponsored mass murder of some 6 million Jews. On Monday, Facebook announced it would block posts that deny the Holocaust. Facebook said its decision was driven by the rise of anti-Semitism and “the alarming level of ignorance about the Holocaust, particularly among young people.” On Wednesday, Twitter has announced a similar position.
BLCK VC launches the Black Venture Institute
In partnership with Operator Collective, Salesforce Ventures and UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, Black Venture Institute of BLCK VC wants to help more black entrepreneurs become angel investors. The goal is to train 300 students over the next three years to be able to write checks.
“It is these closed networks that have contributed to the lack of access for the black community over the years,” BLCK VC co-founder Frederik Groce told Ron Miller. “The Black Venture Institute is a structural attempt to create access for black operators, from engineers to product marketing managers.”
GV finally has a black companion, Terri Burns
Terri Burns recently partnered with GV, formerly known as Google Ventures. Burns is now GV’s only black female partner, which is wild. But, you know, progress is not perfection.
Back to when Burns talked a little bit about racial justice in technology and venture capital.
“Venture capital certainly plays a role,” Burns, then principal of GV, told ProWellTech about the general lack of diversity in technology. “VC is a tool that can enable companies to scale significantly and quickly, and historically this tool has not been distributed equally. For example, VC has traditionally focused on founders of a small number of institutions and pedigrees that are not particularly diverse (in 2016 we learned from Richard Kerby, general partner of Equal Ventures, that 40% of VCs went to Harvard or Stanford). With a fairer distribution of funds between different backgrounds, under-represented people will have a better chance of success. “
Wing’s co-founder admits her mistakes
Audrey Gelman, the former CEO of The Wing who stepped down in June, posted a letter that he sent to former The Wing employees last week. In it, Gelman apologizes for not taking action to combat the mistreatment of women of color at The Wing. He also recognized that his drive for success and rapid scalability “came at the expense of a healthy and sustainable culture that matched our projected values and workplace practices that made our team feel valued and respected.”
This meant, Gelman said, The Wing “had not subverted the historical oppression and racist roots of the hospitality industry; we dressed him like a kindler [sic], more delicate version. “
Here are some other highlights from his letter:
- “The needs of the members came first, and those members were often white and rich enough to afford The Wing membership dues.”
- “White privilege and power travel have been rewarded with acquiescence, instead of doubling our expected values.”
- “When the awareness set in The Wing was not institutionally different in the way it proclaimed, it hurt more because the space we supported was different it reinforced the secular patterns of women of color and especially black women who have been let down by women. and our limited feminist values. “
Human Capital will be launched as a newsletter next Friday. Sign up here to get the message straight to your inbox.