Co-published by the American Prospect
Parsing who is a company employee and who is an independent contractor is no mere academic exercise: Contractors typically lack the workplace benefits and security enjoyed by traditional employees.
Lawbreakers who happen to be bosses are, in cases of misclassifying employees as “contractors,” treated with an enviable amount of understanding by the IRS.
Truck drivers spend unpaid hours awaiting assignments from dispatchers, as well as burning up time at vehicle inspections or completing shipping paperwork—time that would be compensated if they were classified as hourly or salaried employees, instead of as contractors.
Tony Sheldon, an internationally known trade unionist and the national secretary of Australia’s Transport Workers Union, recently attended a Las Vegas convention of world labor representatives, hosted by the Teamsters. Capital & Main caught up with him later in Los Angeles.
What if millions of American workers were being denied health insurance, job security and the most basic legal protections, from overtime pay to workers compensation to the right to join a union?