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IATSE Topper Matthew Loeb Backs Hillary Clinton on Uber Issue

Matthew Loeb, president of the Intl. Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, has come down on the side of Hillary Clinton on the issue of companies’ “misclassifying workers” as independent contractors.

The frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination raised the issue Monday in a speech that was widely seen as taking on such start-ups as Uber for hiring workers as independent contractors rather than full employees.

“This on-demand or so called ‘gig economy’ is creating exciting opportunity and unleashing innovation, but it’s also raising hard questions about workplace protections and what a good job will look like in the future,” Clinton said in a speech at the New School in New York City.

Loeb also blasted Republican candidates Jeb Bush and Rand Paul for defending the practice by corporations. Bush plugged the ride service on Monday, announcing plans to request an Uber this week during a visit to San Francisco, while Paul tweeted that Clinton should not be discussing Uber since she’s been riding in limos for more than two decades.

Loeb said Clinton was right to bring up the issue.

“We are facing a growing trend of shameless companies misclassifying our members — in a variety of professions from broadcast technicians to stage hands — as independent contractors,” he said. “In misclassifying workers to reduce labor costs, companies deny middle class workers their hard-earned area standard wages and many critical benefits, including health care, pension qualification and unemployment and disability insurance.”

“All middle class Americans should applaud Secretary Clinton for raising this worker misclassification issue,” said Loeb. “She clearly has their interests at heart. By speaking out, she is standing with them in the fight to enable their families to live with dignity.”

The IATSE reps more than 100,000 below-the-line workers.

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