Uber, Lyft win California vote on drivers' rights

Video Credit: Reuters - Politics
Published on November 4, 2020 - Duration: 01:28s

Uber, Lyft win California vote on drivers' rights

Voters in California look to have backed a ballot proposal by Uber and its allies that cements app-based food delivery and ride-hail drivers' status as independent contractors, not employees, according to a projection by data provider Edison Research.

Emer McCarthy reports.

Uber, Lyft win California vote on drivers' rights

In a major win for Uber and Lyft, voters in California have backed a measure allowing the firms to keep classifying drivers as independent contractors, not employees.

That's according to vote projections by data provider Edison Research.

It means the ride-hailing apps won't have to offer their workers employee-related benefits, such as sick leave.

The ballot measure, known as Proposition 22, was brought forward after a state labor law required companies that control how workers do their jobs to classify them as employees.

The apps say that hampered their ability to provide flexibility for drivers, who want to choose when and how they work.

Opponents say they just want the freedom to exploit workers and avoid employee costs.

Uber, Lyft and others poured more than 200 million dollars into the fight, making it the most expensive ballot campaign in California history.

But that appears to have paid off, with a substantial majority backing Prop 22, pending official certification of the vote.

Wedbush Securities had estimated a full-blown change to worker status would have cost Uber 500 million dollars a year.

Some of the apps had threatened to leave California if they lost.

The battle over employee rights is far from over, however, with similar legal tussles ongoing in other U.S. states.

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