Home Tech News Uber CEO Asks Congress to Include Gig Workers in Coronavirus Stimulus Package

Uber CEO Asks Congress to Include Gig Workers in Coronavirus Stimulus Package


A novel strain of coronavirus has affected businesses at a global extent, and Uber is one of them. COVID-19 is ever more affecting the livelihoods of Uber drivers. It is also hindering their potential to gain enough rides for making money. Referring to these business conditions, Dara Khosrowshahi, the Uber CEO, has asked President Donald for help. On Monday, the Uber executive has sent a letter to the White House as well as to jurisdictive leaders of both parties. In the letter, Mr. Khosrowshahi has asked the government and leaders to include gig workers in the federal economic stimulus package. He has requested them to consider including benefits and protections for independent workers, not just workers. Mr. Khosrowshahi added his intention behind writing is not only to ask a rescue for Uber. Instead, he aims to support for the self-governing people working on his platform.

So far, Uber as taken a few measures to assist its workers affected by the calamity. The ride-hailing giant has also agreed to provide two weeks of financial assistance for workers if they get diagnosed with coronavirus. Even more, Uber has committed to offering free sanitizing products to drivers. But the latest move of Uber CEO arrives after the U.S. government announced a trillion-dollar coronavirus stimulus plan. Mr. Khosrowshahi wants to include delivery workers and independent drivers in the nation’s planned package for COVID-19. Even more, he has requested lawmakers to introduce changes in labor laws in the long run. Mr. Khosrowshahi has suggested to take in a new class of workers which he calls a third way. He noted the new type could eliminate the obligatory choice between protection and flexibility for millions of U.S. workers.

It is a notable change for the company. Uber, along with its gig economy associates have spent many years battling to retain their workers categorized as independent contractors. It also means that companies need not compensate for employees perks like sick leave, overtime, or health care. Well, Uber is not the only company to depend on gig workers. Other companies like DoorDash and Lyft also rely on the same. Those companies have opposed a new lawsuit in California that intends to re-categorize independent workers as employees. So this massive change in driver classification would cost millions of dollars for the companies.