White House Threatens Gig Economy

(Daily360.com) – The Biden administration is taking aim at gig workers in a move that will be very unpopular among them. Gig workers are typically independent contractors throughout several different sectors of the country’s workforce. At least one third of American workers are considered part of the ”gig economy” and represent roughly $1.2 trillion to the U.S. economy in annual earnings.

The Biden administration has taken it upon itself to issue a new rule that would likely ban gig workers from entering into independent contracts for work. They’re using the Fair Labor Standards Act to stop companies from hiring employees without offering them full-time status and benefits. This decision does not take into account that 79% of gig workers say they do not want to be converted into full-time employees.

They say they prefer the freedom independent contracting offers them. Gig workers like the freedom they have with their time and schedule and they appreciate not being beholden to a full-time daily company schedule. The United Auto Workers and other unions recently locked horns with the Biden administration over wages and as a result the government is pushing for these people to be offered full time positions and union membership.

Critics say this is not a solution in the working world of 2024, as technology and other advancements have made gig working more viable than ever. Another factor is that during the government mandated pandemic lockdowns, many workers were forced to work from home and companies adjusted how their workflows operated. Many found they preferred this work style and transitioned into contract workers. Now, the government is trying to force the workforce back into full-time service jobs. To give just one example of the damage this policy could bring, a recent study shows this move by the government would likely cost 73,000 jobs for workers that create apps and tech services.

When polled, most gig workers say they would like to have more access to things like health insurance but not at the cost of full-time schedules. Many companies have also said they would be willing to work toward a balance with their contract employees. It seems neither side is very enthusiastic about their heavy-handed government approach.

Copyright 2024, Daily360.com