A Long-Awaited Truce

If there is one thing we have learned throughout the years, it’s the fact that a human being’s skill-set is truly limitless. No matter what sort of question we are pitted against, we always somehow find a fitting answer. In fact, we don’t just find an answer, but we also make sure to construct a solution that adds value to our lives under some capacity. Now, as utopian as it sounds, this approach doesn’t quite boast a flawless record, because despite our best efforts, we remain somewhat inefficient within certain aspects. To give you an example, we can talk about how there is literally no way through which we can keep an eye on every single area within our spectrum. With such a dynamic bringing sizeable risk into play, we needed a protective blanket, and the world will get that big time once it stumbles upon the concept of dedicated regulatory bodies. Having proper supervision across each and every area effectively cleaned up the landscape. However, the newfound order was soon knocked off its perch by none other than technology. You see, right from the get-go, technology was able to exploit all the loopholes that plagued our existing regulatory framework, thus also diminishing the authority associated with it. This would cause some major disruption, but fortunately, the tide will turn yet again. In fact, a fresh regulation only adds to what has been a carousel of tipping scales.

Washington governor, Jay Inslee has formally approved a new law, which establishes a minimum pay standard for all the ride-hailing drivers in Washington. According to the new regulation, the drivers will now earn a minimum of $1.17 per mile and 34 cents per minute, with a minimum pay of $3.00 per trip. Effective from 31st December 2022, it will also provide paid sick leave, family medical leave, and long-term care programs to all the drivers. Beyond these benefits, there is a workers’ compensation available for whenever someone gets ill or injured on the job. Notably enough, while the price slabs are applicable throughout Washington, Seattle will continue to operate around its own minimum rates of $1.38 per mile and 59 cents per minute, alongside $5.17 per trip. Another US city expected to follow its own pay slab is New York.

While the law is extremely mindful about drivers and their interests, it does have something for the companies as well. Supported by Uber and Lyft, the bill solves a longstanding conundrum by deeming drivers as independent contractors, and furthermore, it restrains local authorities from implementing additional requirements for companies to follow.

“Drivers achieved this win because labor organizations, legislators, and app-based companies listened to them, and then worked together to drive a historic bill that works for them,” said Jen Hensley, head of government relations at Lyft.

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