California classified workers in the odd-job economy as full employees when it passed Assembly Bill 5 (AB5) in September 2019. The state has determined that drivers employed by Uber and Lyft are qualified under California law for the same protections offered to employees. Last August, the San Francisco Superior Court found that Uber and Lyft had violated the law by continuing to classify their workers as contractors.
By passing Prop 22, voters in California gave Uber and Lyft drivers, as well as their Instacart and DoorDash counterparts, access to health care subsidies and insurance policy plans. At the same time, they definitely classified these workers as contractors and denied them the protections they would have obtained as full-time employees of these companies. Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, and Instacart spent over $ 200 million building support for Prop 22, and it worked. At the end of the first surveys, 40 percent of people who shared that they voted yes to the measure said they did so because they believed they were helping workers in the odd-job economy earn a living wage. Other than overturning the measure by the California Supreme Court, lawmakers are unlikely to be able to do anything about the measure, as one of its main provisions states that a Legislative majority of seven-eighths is required to change it.