Legislative Alert

Letter Opposing Legislation that Would Degrade Worker Power

House Committee on Energy and Commerce
2125 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Members of the Committee on Energy and Commerce:

On behalf of the 60 affiliates of the AFL-CIO, representing 12.5 million working people, the AFL-CIO urges you to vote no on H.R. 5146, the Advancing Gig Economy (AGE) Act. This legislation serves only to bolster a sector that currently degrades job quality and dilutes worker power by circumventing the state and federal laws that provide guaranteed wage levels, overtime pay, safety protections, and other benefits.

All workers deserve a job with good wages and benefits, strong labor standards, workplace safety, and union representation. The current trend of wage stagnation and racial and economic inequality, directly related to the growing gig economy, is unsustainable and threatens future economic growth.

The AGE Act, however, seeks to expand the gig economy without providing any safeguards or protections for the workers who make these businesses run. The bill provides no opportunity for workers or their unions to comment on whether “promoting the growth of the gig economy” is a worthy effort for the federal government or state governments at all.

As explained in our submission to the Subcommittee on Innovation, Data, and Commerce for its Wednesday, September 20, 2023 hearing on this bill, we have serious concerns with the work directed by this legislation, the agencies directed to perform the research, and the lack of clarity regarding the definitions of platform and app-based work. At base, the federal government should not work to embolden an industry that often pays less than the minimum wage and evades basic protections like overtime, sick pay, or unemployment insurance.

Therefore, we ask that you vote no on this legislation.

William Samuel
Director, Government Affairs