A California bill threatens to upend ‘the gig economy’ The bill, which passed the California State Senate yesterday, offers protections to workers who are forced to operate as contractors without benefits; food-delivery couriers, janitors, nail salon workers, construction workers, and franchise owners could all be reclassified as employees. But the big issue are the app-based workers, like ride-hailing drivers working for Lyft and Uber. The two companies have been lobbying unsuccessfully for an exemption. Labor groups are pushing for a similar bill in New York, expect failed efforts in Washington and Oregon to be dusted off and tried again.
New York Times
Medicaid debt is destroying people’s lives This chilling report from The Atlantic begins with the heartbreaking tale of Tawanda Rhodes, who now lives alone, and "on borrowed time," after caring for her mother and husband, who both died of Alzheimer’s disease. But she discovered too late that Medicaid can function more like a loan rather than insurance. And soon, she was holding a bill for $198,660.26 for more than five years that her mother was on MassHealth, Massachusetts’ state Medicaid program. The Medicaid Estate Recovery Program was once a sensible-sounding reform, part of Bill Clinton’s deficit-reduction act signed in 1993. Now, it’s placing liens on the accounts of impoverished people, and threatening to seize their homes.
The naval academy investigates the report of a noose The noose was alleged to have been found on a construction site on the Annapolis, Md., Campus. The date was August 28—the 56th anniversary of the March on Washington and Dr. King’s famous "I Have A Dream Speech." Photos of the noose were sent anonymously to a Maryland-based civil rights leader who has been working to authenticate them. "While there is a possibility for the alleged noose to have been part of a hoisting system to complete this ductwork, the Academy takes all allegations of race hate very seriously," said U.S. Naval Academy Superintendent Vice Adm. Sean Buck in a statement. If anyone uses a noose as part of construction or hoisting work, could you let me know? Legitimate question.
On being a better ally in the workplace Cultural critic and multiplatform genius Rebecca Carroll lays it bare in the title: "Black Women Aren’t Here to Solve Your Racism Problem." But her first-hand account of her early days in professional life, in this case, in New York’s magazine world, tells a tale that could be from any industry. But in media, which has the platform to address bias and race in productive ways has been uniquely unwilling to do so. It’s bad leadership, she says. "Black women are hired, and then we are all too often used at the whim of our white supervisors and colleagues," she says. "White co-workers in media spaces, which are already predominantly white: you can do better by listening to your black colleagues, particularly, but not exclusively, on issues pertaining to race."
Don’t get overwhelmed by your diversity initiatives This is the advice given by LaShana Lewis , an engineer, writer, consultant, and diversity expert. While her tips are tailored to smaller, entrepreneurial ventures, they work for anyone who is still early on the path. All are smart, but I’ll flag number two for starters: Ask, "What did we miss with diversity training?" For so many companies and divisions, diversity training is one-and-done. That could be counterproductive. "In my previous work crafting and expanding diversity initiatives, obtaining direct one-on-one feedback from participants has yielded far better insights than any outside observations I could possibly make following a wait-and-see approach."
The value of immigrant communities The economic rationale for limiting immigration is simple: Low wage workers take jobs away from native born workers, particularly those with high school educations. But from an economic perspective, that is far from the entire story, says this opinion piece by Monica Lozano, Chair of the Aspen Institute Latinos and Society Program. "Yet while immigrants are often blamed for unemployment among native-born workers, the jobs they create through productivity goes unnoticed," she says. And, "[i]mmigrants have a huge impact on the overall growth and strength of the American economy as a whole."
Tamara El-Waylly helps write and produce raceAhead.
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The Support of Her Company
How a company supports employees through the pivotal moments in their lives matters. ThriveXMIndex focuses on five key experiences (Career, Family, Health, Financial, and Time). Here, SAP SuccessFactors CMO Kirsten Allegri Williams shares how she reintegrated back to work after beating cancer. Watch the video
“Whoever is born in New York is ill-equipped to deal with any other city: all other cities seem, at best, a mistake, and, at worst, a fraud. No other city is so spitefully incoherent.”
—James Baldwin, Just Above My Head