Stormy Daniels, the adult-film star who allegedly had an affair with President Trump, has penned an op-ed advocating for strippers in California to be treated as freelancers, not employees.
In the piece, published Tuesday in the Los Angeles Times, Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, calls for legislation in California to protect workers whose independent contractor status she says is now threatened in the state due to a court ruling.
Pornography is either a product or a service. Producers of same should be treated as independent contractors.
I see no good reason for the law to mandate one or the other employment status.
From Daniels' op-ed
At most strip clubs, including the ones I’ve worked at throughout my career as a stripper, dancers work as independent contractors who set their own hours. They show up for work on the days they are able to, allowing them to give priority to things like writing a term paper, studying for a test or putting their children to bed at night.
-- Stormy Daniels
Not only does the independent contractor labor status give performers flexibility, decision making discretion and tax advantages, it's also a good thing for the firms/organizations that engage independent contractors as it eliminates a host of HR-related costs, both indirect and overhead.
In its recent Dynamex decision, the California Supreme Court ruled that in order to be an independent contractor, a worker must perform "work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business."
-- Stormy Daniels
Okay, now that complaint seems apropos to me. Indeed, were that decision enforced in myriad other industries, firms would have to retain on staff people whom they otherwise only hire as consultants when they need them.
Take for example, system implementation consulting. Such folks don't do anything that a firm's IT department personnel don't or can't; however, few firms have enough on-staff IT personnel to perform such undertakings in a timely manner. No matter how adept the "five guys in IT" are, they simply cannot perform an implementation that typically takes about a year or two for a team of 10-30 consultants collaborating with senior management and various department directors and staff to do.
The aspirations of strippers seeking strong workplace protections and good benefits are sincere and legitimate, but forcing all dancers to become employees is not the answer. In a state that increasingly relies on independent contractors, be they drivers, caregivers or strippers, we need to find new ways to ensure that all workers, regardless of whether they are employees, have access to health insurance and strong workplace safety protections.
I think she's going too far with this. Contractors are independent businesses, and as such, if there're health insurance coverages to be provided the contractor needs to provide it for firm's owners and employees. The contractor's clients shouldn't be expected to do so for contractor-firm personnel.