News & Commentary

September 15, 2019

Deanna Krokos

Deanna Krokos is a student at Harvard Law School


Before the California legislature’s session ending on Friday, lawmakers brought a broad variety of labor issues to the forefront. As Jared reported, the legislature passed AB5, a bill that would largely codify the Dynamex decision and potentially correct the misclassification of independent contractors in the state, ranging from janitors to gig workers. They also passed several anti-retaliation measures that would both lengthen the time for fired employees to file a claim with the Labor Commissioner and create a “rebuttable presumption” of unfair retaliation is a worker is fired within 90 days of filing a harassment claim.

Further, the legislature passed a bill requiring employers to provide facilities for employees to pump breastmilk. The bill was originally introduced and passed last year, but blocked when former Governor Jerry Brown vetoed it. Each measure will require Governor Gavin Newsom’s signature by October 13th, and go into effect January of next year.

While correcting misclassification remains big news in California, a group of Massachusetts drivers are bringing similar claims against a familiar defendant. Represented by Boston’s Fair Work PC, a former Dynamex driver won class certification this week to represent drivers in the state who claim they were misclassified as independent contractors. The class is comprised of about 100 drivers who delivered packages through the courier service.

The U.S. Women’s Soccer Team continued their legal fight for pay equity in court this week, moving for class certification to include all “past, present, and future” players as plaintiffs in their suit. Their lawsuit was filed in International Women’s Day earlier this year, and followed from broader public discussions of the U.S. Soccer Federation’s traditionally disparate payments to the men’s and women’s teams. Public opinion followed as the Women’s Team went on to win the 2019 Women’s World Cup. If granted, class representatives would include players Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, Carli Lloyd and Becky Sauerbrunn.

Finally, the Wall Street Journal reported that for the second consecutive month, job postings have fallen below last year’s metrics.

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