Concerned at the lack of job and social security among gig and platform workers, the Centre has decided to train officials of the Union and State governments on technological change, new forms of employment, working conditions and mechanisms to protect labour and social security rights of these workers.
Who are ‘gig workers’?
- Gig workers are independent contractors, online platform workers, contract firm workers, on-call workers and temporary workers.
- Under the Social Security Code 2020, the central or state government may notify specific schemes for gig workers, platform workers, and unorganised workers to provide various benefits, such as life and disability cover.
- Gig workers refer to workers outside of the traditional employer-employee relationship.
- Platform workers are workers who access other organisations or individuals using online platforms and earn money by providing them with specific services.
- Unorganised workers include home-based and self-employed workers.
What is being proposed?
- The V.V. Giri Institute, the training arm of the Union Labour Ministry, is organising the programme aimed at sharing information and good experiences on policies and global practices relating to gig and platform workers and their social security.
- Examples such as social security for platform workers in the transport sector of Thailand and Malaysia, where there are online models under which 2% for every ride is deducted for health and accident insurance and for social security will be taken up during the session.
- Another issue that will be taken up is the employer-employee relationship in the context of the gig economy. Workers’ employment relationships are not recognised in law in this case and gig workers are largely excluded from labour and social security rights.
What is the need of more protection?
Though there are certain benefits for youth and migrant workers, such as quick money and flexible work hours in the gig platforms, uncertain working hours and insufficient income are still considered major issues that need governmental address.