DoorDash faces injunction to reclassify some workers as employees

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(Reuters) – San Francisco’s district attorney on Wednesday filed a preliminary injunction against food delivery firm DoorDash to reclassify its contractors as employees, days after a judge granted a similar request in a case against ride-hailing firms Uber and Lyft.

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A DoorDash spokesman said the company felt the effort was ill-timed and that its internal data suggested the majority of its workers wanted to remain as contractors.

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“In the midst of one of the deepest economic recessions in our nation’s history, today’s action … threatens billions of dollars in earnings for California Dashers and revenue for restaurants that rely upon sales from delivery to keep their businesses open”, the spokesman said in an email.

Wednesday’s motion will apply to all DoorDash workers in California, said lead District Attorney Chesa Boudin, confirming an earlier Financial Times report.

A DoorDash Inc. delivery person, center, loads an order bag inside of a DoorDash Kitchens location in Redwood City, California, on Nov. 29, 2019. (Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

“We are seeking an immediate end to DoorDash’s illegal behavior of failing to provide delivery workers with basic workplace protections,” Boudin said.

“All three branches of California’s government have already made clear that these workers are employees under California law and entitled to these important safeguards”, the statement added.

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A California judge on Monday granted the state’s request for a preliminary injunction blocking Uber and Lyft from classifying their drivers as independent contractors rather than employees.

Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, Instacart and Postmates are spending more than $110 million to support a November ballot measure in California, Proposition 22, to classify app-based drivers as contractors.

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