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… The rise of “independent contractors” Is the most significant legal trend in the American workforce – contributing directly to low pay, irregular hours, and job insecurity.
What makes them “independent contractors” is the mainly that the companies they work for say they are. So those companies don’t have to pick up the costs of having full-time employees.
But are they really “independent”? Companies can manipulate their hours and expenses to make them seem so.
It’s become a race to the bottom. Once one business cuts costs by making its workers “independent contractors,” every other business in that industry has to do the same – or face shrinking profits and a dwindling share of the market
Some workers prefer to be independent contractors because that way they get paid in cash. Or they like deciding what hours they’ll work.
Mostly, though, they take these jobs because they can’t find better ones. And as the race to the bottom accelerates, they have fewer and fewer alternatives.
→ from Why We’re All Becoming Independent Contractors, by Robert Reich