USA: San Francisco Uber drivers react to new order classifying them as employees

Uber drivers in San Francisco gave their opinions on Friday, on a new regulation given by the California Public Utilities Commission earlier in the week that officially classifies ride-hailing drivers as employees. The latest enforcement of the state's gig work law, known as AB5, will primarily affect ride app giants Uber and Lyft, who have resisted such regulations for years, claiming that it will cut into profits and make driving for their platforms less desirable. «In my opinion I am not agreeable because number one, we as Uber drivers would want to have our independence. I mean independence in terms of time. We want to work according to our availability, and also I think it will lose the essence of what Uber is all about. It is all about being independent, to come in and out of the app anytime you wish,» said Rogelio, an Uber driver. «I don't know if they're going to give you health insurance or not, I don't know what they're going to do with that, but that's the part I don't like. What I like about it now is why I'm doing it. I'm free to do it whenever I want,» said Hugo, echoing claims from the ride companies that drivers prefer flexibility. Under the new law, gig working services are also expected to provide worker's compensation insurance by July 1. The companies continue to back a referendum headed for the state voting ballot in November that will exempt driving services from the law.
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