California’s independent truckers want to keep on truckin’

A California labor law that was to take effect Jan. 1 and would have impacted more than 70,000 independent truckers, many of whom transport fresh fruits and vegetables, has been temporarily blocked, reported Reuters. A hearing has been set for Jan. 13 to consider a permanent injunction.  

“Having considered the parties’ arguments set forth in plaintiffs’ supporting papers, as well as defendants’ and intervenor-defendant’s opposition papers, the court finds that plaintiffs’ requested temporary restraining order is warranted,” U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez said in his order.

Reuters reported that “California’s gig worker law was signed by Governor Gavin Newsom in September and has garnered national attention, largely owing to the size of California’s workforce and the state’s leadership role in establishing policies that are frequently adopted by other states.”

The law would make it harder for gig economy companies to qualify their workers as independent contractors rather than employees.

The California Trucking Association had filed a lawsuit in November seeking an exemption, arguing that the bill violates the U.S. Constitution and that it is irrational, vague and incoherent.

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