Hair designers and cosmetologists from across the state gathered in Olympia Monday to fight legislation that would prohibit them from booth renting. The measures would force individuals who operate their own small business as an independent contractor or sole proprietor to work for an employer – as opposed to being their own boss. Washington House Republicans’ John Sattgast reports.
SATTGAST: Hundreds of people came to the state Capitol to protest House Bill 1515 and Senate Bill 5513.
WOMAN TEARFUL TESTIMONY “We are women, mothers, single mothers, single fathers, members of the LGBTKQA community. By removing our shared work-space environment that we choose to participate as sole proprietors, with the way this bill is written, that is exactly what that would do.””
SATTGAST: Representative Gina Mosbrucker, ranking Republican on the House Labor and Workplace Standards Committee, listened to the public hearing, and was moved by the personal stories shared on the legislation.
MOSBRUCKER: “It’s our responsibility as legislators to listen to their voices and the tears in their voice, that say that if we pass this legislation – if we make them not be an independent contractor, we’re taking away their livelihood – their ability to spend time with their families. It’s devastating!”
SATTGAST: House Republican Leader J.T. Wilcox was impressed with the grassroots response and organization of the hair designers and cosmetologists.
WILCOX: “The campus today is covered with people that no one had ever heard of a week ago. And they’re here because their way of life and their livelihood is being threatened. I’m glad that they care. So do we!”
SATTGAST: Both measures would also impact many other professionals, including custodians, truck drivers and construction workers, who operate their own small businesses.
The bills will need to pass out of their respective committees before they reach the floor of the House and Senate for a full vote. John Sattgast, Olympia