Former Uber engineer Eddy Hernandez said it started with the yes on Proposition 22 Zoom backgrounds that began appearing around the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. Then employees were offered free Proposition 22 T-shirts, managers and executives talked about the proposition in meetings and Hernandez got the sense that bonuses and promotions would go to people who worked on projects related to promoting the proposition.
Hernandez said he felt a constant push to support the proposition at work. He didn’t like feeling that kind of political pressure on the job. On top of that, Hernandez opposes the ballot initiative, and he did not feel comfortable having that viewpoint. If the proposition passes, so-called gig economy companies such as Uber, Lyft and Instacart would be exempted from state labor law and allowed to continue classifying workers as contractors.
“I felt like I was stripped of my voice because if I said anything there would be a conflict of interest or it would affect the financials of the company. That’s a weird place to be in. It’s something I didn’t want to normalize,” he said.