Comment from Jerrold Johnson

I enjoy being an independent contractor and it has been a lifesaver for me. I quit my full time W-2 with benefits in Sept 2020 because of health reasons. I started delivering for Über Eats earning money while I searched for a new job. This year I had significant medical bills despite having two health insurance policies. Working as an independent contractor with Über Eats has allowed me to pay down my unexpected medical bills and given me flexibility with my work schedule so I can meet my team of doctors without having to worry about if I have enough sick leave or finding someone to cover my work. This flexibility with scheduling has greatly reduced my mental stress while actually increasing my gross income. This I can meet my medical bill obligations and support my family.

I’m also a part owner of a business that has suffered financially from the COVID-19 pandemic.

I have good job satisfaction knowing that my gig work is helping my customers stay safe and helping restaurants stay afloat during these hard times.

Über Eats and Door Dash take health and safety if their clients, their customers, and contractors seriously. For example, they don’t want us to drive if we are feeling ill. If we can’t drive due to a positive test for COVID-19, they will pay us half our weekly average earnings till we are no longer in quarantine. Über Eats also provides free PPE to their drivers and we must always practice good health safety which they provide online training. Über Eats also provides many other benefits and perks to good drivers such as free roadside assistance, a medical savings account, education, and optional insurance.

In short, without the flexibility of scheduling and a good income, I would not be able to continue my medical care and would have to consider applying for disability and other benefits such as SNAPS (food stamps). Because of Über Eats and other gig companies, I can remain to be a productive member of society doing a job I enjoy and is helpful for the economy. Without this type of work scheduling and good pay, my life would be much more stressful, my healthcare needs could not be met, and I would become a burden on the economy for the first time in my life (I’m 51 years old). My wife has a W-2 job which includes much needed good health insurance.

Also, I have an emergency savings account of about $90,000 that I made a withdrawal from this year once to cover a short gap. I’m also vested in a retirement plan for my future needs. But for right now, being a contract employee is best for me. It is a decision I made in my best interest and I don’t want a regulation made by others to fix something that isn’t broken. If I become a regular employee right now would bring significant hardship for me.

Comment ID: WHD-2020-0007-0924 | 22-Oct-20

Categorized under Flexibility, Health, Independence

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