Cambridge Becomes Second Mass. City to Stand with Teamsters in Combatting Worker Misclassification

Varagas Group Mass Misclass

Earlier this week, Cambridge, Mass. followed neighboring Somerville by unanimously passing a resolution aimed at stopping Uber, Lyft, Doordash, and other so-called ‘gig’ companies from abusing drivers by misclassifying them as independent contractors. The full City Council voted in favor of a resolution calling on the Massachusetts Legislature to pass S.627/H.1158, “An Act Establishing Protections and Accountability for Transportation Network Company (TNC) and Delivery Network Company (DNC) Workers.”

“These bills are critical to our union,” said Tom Mari, President of Teamsters Local 25. “Workers’ wages, work rules, benefits, and pension plans are all at stake in this fight. We can’t allow greedy CEOs from Silicon Valley to destroy the good jobs we fought to create in Massachusetts.”

The resolution was authored by Paul Toner and co-sponsored by Sumbul Siddiqui, Jivan Sobrinho-Wheeler, and Ayesha Wilson, a former member of Teamsters Local 122. It noted that Big Tech’s misclassification schemes aren’t just bad for workers, they also negatively impact public resources: Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, GrubHub, and similar companies deplete funds for unemployment insurance, workers’ compensation and paid family and medical leave that are funded by the employers who actually abide by labor law. It also noted a recent financial assessment of “gig” companies by the state auditor that found over the course of a decade, the state was cheated out of hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue for these programs and taxes.

Big Tech companies have been attempting to get a referendum on the November ballot that would legitimize their unlawful misclassification racket in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The measure, as written, contradicts both state and federal standards that protect workers from misclassification as independent contractors.