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Gig workers group opposes Uber’s new pitch to provinces

March 11, 2021

Don’t be fooled by Uber’s apparent change of heart, warns Josh Mandryk

CTV News is reporting on Uber’s request that provinces force it to offer its workers some minimum employment benefits. Uber generally takes the position that its workers are independent contractors, and therefore not entitled to any benefits. Presumably this new plea for provincial governments to force it to provide some benefits is an effort to make Uber look more reasonable than it has in the past.

But, of course, there is absolutely nothing to stop Uber from providing its workers with any benefits it wants to provide. It does not need the provincial governments to pass legislation forcing it to do anything. As Josh Mandryk points out, this is really about creating a sub class of workers for whom employment standards protections do not apply:

… Joshua Mandryk, a labour lawyer at Goldblatt Partners in Toronto, see[s] the Canadian proposal as a continuation of [California’s] Proposition 22, which passed in November’s election despite union opposition.

“Canadians should not be fooled,” said Mandryk.

“Uber has framed this proposal as a magnanimous bestowing of benefits when it really appears to be about carving their drivers out of basic employment standards protections like the minimum wage.”

Read the article here.


Joshua Mandryk

Practice Areas

Employment Law