AirTalk® | October 30, 2019

Not long after Gov. Gavin Newsom signed AB-5 into law, gig economy giants Uber, Lyft and DoorDash announced this week they’re seeking an exemption.  

The companies are part of a coalition that announced a $90 million ballot campaign, The Protect App-Based Drivers & Services Act, in hopes of it landing on the ballot next November. The initiative calls for app-based drivers to be considered independent contractors as long as the companies meet certain criteria, including an earnings guarantee of  “at least 120% of minimum wage, while preserving the opportunity to earn more with no caps on what drivers can earn.” Drivers would also earn 30 cents per mile for maintenance expenses and gas. The proposal also says the companies will provide health care stipends and occupational accident insurance. Although the companies are calling for what could be a compromise by promising certain benefits, some stand in support of AB-5, which reclassifies a wide array of gig workers from independent contractors to employees. The companies argue the law will take away drivers’ flexibility and eliminate work opportunities. 

We reached out to Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez. She was not able to join us for the interview, but she sent us this statement: 

“There is nothing in either the State Supreme Court’s decision or AB 5 that impacts flexibility for workers. This initiative is disingenuous. These billion-dollar corporations still refuse to offer their workers what every other employee in California is entitled to: earning the minimum wage for all hours worked, social security, normal reimbursements for their costs, overtime pay, and the right to organize.”



Brandon Castillo, spokesperson for the coalition that has launched the ballot campaign on behalf of Uber, Lyft and DoorDash 

Wendy Musell, an employment lawyer with the firm Stewart & Musell in Emeryville, California

Harry Campbell, Los Angeles-based Uber and Lyft driver and founder of, a blog and podcast for rideshare drivers; he tweets @TheRideShareGuy


The Latest News


Legal attack on California gig initiative threatens direct democracy

Direct democracy is a part of California’s DNA and is deeply ingrained in our state [...] Read more

California Supreme Court should reject union arguments, uphold Proposition 22

Defeated at the ballot box and in lower state courts, California unions are turning to [...] Read more
Press Releases

PADS Coalition Responds to SEIU Request for Supreme Court Review on Prop 22

Today, in response to SEIU’s request for the California Supreme Court to review a recent [...] Read more