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Debate around gig economy about to heat up in NYS

A coalition of business groups and firms, including Uber and Lyft, are launching a campaign to oppose efforts to provide benefits and labor protections to workers in the so-called “gig” economy the groups say could hurt the flexibility of the work.

The coalition, known as Flexible Work for New York, also is launching digital ads this week ahead of the coming debate over how to classify workers who drive ride hailing vehicles, deliver food through apps like Door Dash and provide other on-demand services.

“New Yorkers rely on flexible work to start small businesses, care for loved ones, pursue education on their own time, and more,” the coalition said in a statement. “We urge State lawmakers to protect flexible, independent work and fight to expand protections for these New Yorkers.”

It’s the clearest sign yet the debate over contract and independent workers in the “gig” sector could be one of the more contentious ones to face state lawmakers when they return to Albany in January.

Workers who fall under the independent contractor status traditional jobs have, like access to employer-based health care, retirement benefits and other guarantees that have become a staple of post-World War II jobs.

Read more from Spectrum News