They’re not workers, they’re independent contractors!
The headline at Mountain State Spotlight:
Seeking ‘clarity,’ West Virginia lawmakers push to turn more employees into independent contractors
With the subheading:
This status change matters, because independent contractors aren't eligible for unemployment benefits and other worker protections.
Erin Beck writes:
Amid a global pandemic and economic crisis, state lawmakers are rushing through legislation that could make it harder for West Virginians to file for unemployment if they lose work and pay for medical care if they get sick on the job.
West Virginians could also lose state-level protections that became especially important during the pandemic, like guarantees they would be paid on time, earn minimum wage, and receive overtime pay.
Senate Bill 272 adds a new section into state law called the West Virginia Employment Law Worker Classification Act, which aims to clarify the definition of an independent contractor.
The bill comes from the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). (Of course it does.)
Gotta degree in something? It doesn’t matter what. Yes, you can become a WV teacher!
From reporter Ryan Quinn in the Charleston Gazette-Mail:
The West Virginia Legislature has finished passing a bill that would allow people without education degrees to become public school teachers even if whatever degree they do have isn’t related to the subject area they plan to teach in.
The legislation now heads to Republican Gov. Jim Justice for his signature or veto.
Leaders of the Republican supermajorities that control both chambers of the state Legislature fast-tracked the bill.
Okay, you will need to pass a subject matter test and take “pedagogical training or a pedagogical course.”
It should also be noted that earlier today the House of Delegates outlawed teacher strikes. (This time they really mean it!) By the way, a number of Republicans did vote, along with most Democrats, against the legislation.