LEGISLATIVE AGENDA

Uber, Lyft drivers on path to unionizing

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Independent contractors driving vehicles on behalf of ride-hailing apps like Uber and Lyft could be a step closer to forming a labor union after Staten Island state Sen. Diane Savino said she would introduce a bill next month paving the way for it to happen.

“New York would be the first state to pass ‘right to bargain’ legislation that could pave the way for more than 120,000 New York drivers to have their voices heard,” said Jim Conigliaro Jr., founder of the ride-hail advocacy group Independent Drivers Guild, in a release.

“Workers need the power to protect their right to work when they want and secure the protections they need.”

The IDG called for such legislation in October, claiming ride-hail companies like Uber and Lyft continually change the terms of driver working conditions, many times costing them money they would have otherwise received for getting passengers around.

Bronx Assemblyman Marcos Crespo has also supported the bill.

 

Gillibrand fighting to stop PFAS water pollution

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is introducing legislation she says would put the first-ever limits on how much per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances can be dumped into New York waterways.

The substances — typically found in firefighting foams, among other products — has been linked to cancers and other serious health and developmental effects, according to Gillibrand.

The bill would require the Environmental Protection Agency to review sources of PFAS in waterbodies, and set limits to how much can be released.

It also would require the EPA to more closely monitor wastewater, also known as a source of PFAS.

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