With the novel coronavirus pandemic presenting an ongoing risk to individuals’s health, specifically the health of important employees, San Francisco is conducting a survey for more information about the concerns gig employees are facing during this time. The results of this study, which ought to be readily available within 4 to six weeks, will assist shape regional policy choices.
The study seeks to comprehend how COVID-19 has impacted the number of gig tasks readily available, pay and companies’ positions on health insurance and paid sick leave. It also asks what employees feel they most urgently need, whether it’s access to protective devices or emergency situation funds, in addition to if employees are likely to work while sick due to their monetary situation.
Performed by the city’s Local Firm Development Commission (LAFCO) and led by UC Santa Cruz teacher Chris Benner, the research study is targeting at least 500 gig workers who carry out services for 12 of the most popular platforms: Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, Caviar, Uber Eats, Postmates, Grubhub, Instacart, Shipt, Saucey, Amazon Flex and Drizly.
” This is a really vital workforce for a number a reasons,” Benner told TechCrunch. “They are especially susceptible and prone, particularly early on with motorists taking people to and from the airport. Now as we’re potentially seeing a spike in the online purchasing of groceries and food delivery, these individuals doing the deliveries are offering essential services throughout this time of having to shelter in house and are possibly susceptible. And if they’re not taking care in managing food and groceries, they could potentially be spreading out [COVID-19].”
This survey comes after Benner was tasked with leading a more comprehensive study about gig workers in San Francisco. That study began last September however is currently on hold as Benner and his group focus more on the COVID-19 study. Still, they are analyzing the 700 actions from that preliminary study.
” What we know from other sources and what our survey will likely confirm is it’s a large immigrant labor force,” Benner said. “It’s a lot of individuals dealing with low wages and numerous hours and many people do this work full-time.”
Outdoors of this study, the city has begun taking actions to promote for this vital workforce. Yesterday, SF’s Board of Supervisors pushed for more gig worker protections, asking the SF Office of Labor Standards Enforcement, for example, to develop enforcement treatments in compliance with Assembly Expense 5.
This board of manager’s resolution, which Gig Workers Rising and We Drive Development advocated for the board of supervisors to adopt, came after Gig Employees Increasing urged California legislators to impose AB 5. Earlier this month, Gig Employees Increasing sent out a letter to California Gov. Gavin Newsom and other state officials asking them to step in and safeguard employees during this pandemic.
In the meantime, workers thinking about filling out the survey can do so here