A recent letter from national labor leaders has called for a "portable" system of benefits that will replace the current patch-work of systems called "workers' compensation programs.":
"We need a portable vehicle for worker protections and benefits.Traditionally, benefits and protections such as workers compensation, unemployment insurance, paid time off, retirement savings, and training/development have been, largely or partly, components of a worker’s employment relationship with an employer. The Affordable Care Act has disrupted that model, providing more independent workers a different avenue of access to health insurance. Another new model is needed to support new ways of work. We believe this model should be:
● Independent: Any worker should be able to access a certain basic set of protections as an individual regardless of where they source income opportunities.
● Flexible and pro-rated: People are pulling together income from a variety of sources, so any vehicle should support contributions that can be pro-rated by units of money earned, jobs done, or time worked, covering new ways of micro-working across different employers or platforms.
● Portable: A person should be able to take benefits and protections with them in and out of various work scenarios.
● Universal: All workers should have access to a basic set of benefits regardless of employment status.
● Supportive of innovation: Businesses should be empowered to explore and pilot safety net options regardless of the worker classification they utilize.