LAUNCHING: Website Documents Widespread Support for DOL Rule on Independent Contractors
Employment Policies Institute (EPI) launches WeSupportTheRule.com, highlighting hundreds of comments from Americans who support the DOL’s new rule on independent contractors.
Publication Date: January 2021
Washington, D.C. (January 6, 2020) — Today, the Employment Policies Institute (EPI) is launching a new website, WeSupportTheRule.com, that documents hundreds of comments supporting the Department of Labor’s (DOL) newly finalized rule on independent contractor classification. The rule — which comes after California’s controversial AB 5 law destroyed the incomes of thousands of freelancers — outlines a classification method that prioritizes workers’ choices over the government’s. Unlike AB 5, this new rule doesn’t assume that full-time employee status is the best option for all workers.
WeSupportTheRule.com features comments from independent contractors, including gig workers, across the country who prefer their current classification status over full-time employment. These workers support the DOL rule, citing the ability to retain the independence and flexibility they associate with being an independent contractor.
The website also points to compelling stories of workers around the country who have benefitted from gig work—and those who have been harmed by attacks on the gig industry.
Below are just a few comments from workers who support the rule:
“With our family and other responsibilities it is impossible for me to work a regular job with fixed hours. The gig flexibility allows me to work nearly every day when and where I can and still earn the needed income.”
“In a year with a pandemic, record high unemployment and, for me, Covid-related heart failure, I made more money than I did last year. How? By being an independent contractor.”
“As a working mom, the flexibility I have from being my own boss is priceless. I’m able to be there for my son and balance work and family obligations as I see fit, without having to depend on getting an employer’s approval.”
“Driving as an independent contractor allows me the opportunity that no other part-time job can. As a father of 4, flexibility around my work schedule is CRITICAL for me to be able to uphold family values and still be able to fight to survive on this added income.”
Site visitors can filter these comments by category, highlighting the many reasons workers say they are supporting this rule, including flexibility, independence, family concerns, and retirement plans.
“Freelancers across the country value the autonomy and flexibility that comes with being an independent contractor,” commented EPI Managing Director Michael Saltsman. “These workers certainly don’t want a California-style AB 5 law determining how they earn a living. The DOL rule provides another way forward so that workers decide how they earn a living — not the government.”