Dear Madam or Sir,
We are freelancers, engineers, translators, coaches, architects, who are independent and wish to remain so. We value the values of entrepreneurship and wish to continue to do so without subordination.
To enable us to remain independent, the gap between the employee and self-employed status must be kept as wide as possible. The emergence of digital work platforms tends to blur this distinction. We do not want a third status where, in a weak position vis-à-vis the platforms, we would combine the subordination of the employee with the lack of protection of the self-employed. In this context, the debates on the presumption of employment relationship for platform workers are of great interest to us. A strong presumption of employment relationship would result in all subordinated workers being salaried, but above all in our situation it would protect us from the subordination of platforms that we don’t want. We want to remain independent, and we consider that the presumption of employment relationship is an excellent idea, because the platforms we work with will think twice before imposing terms and conditions on us that we cannot refuse. We will end up in a situation of having to make the choice between taking the assignment knowing that we lose our autonomy or refusing it and depriving ourselves of income.
In the context of the debates in the European Parliament and the European Council, we are astonished to hear that as politicians who claim to defend the values of entrepreneurship, you might be defending a weak presumption of employment relationship, limiting its triggering to two or three out of five criteria of subordination. Let us be concrete about what it means to defend criteria for triggering the presumption. This means that when a platform with which we work as a freelancer imposes fixed maximum rates and/or prevents us from building up a client base, one or two of these criteria will not be sufficient to trigger the presumption of salaried status.
Do you consider that we are still independent in this case? Will we have no choice but to refuse the assignment if we want to remain independent? Even though with the exponential development of digital work platforms, clients will increasingly turn to them, and we will find it increasingly difficult to keep our clients. To defend our independence, we ask you not to impose criteria to launch the presumption of salaried status. This is the only way to protect our independence and to send a clear signal to the platforms that if they want to subordinate, they have to pay, and if they want to work with real self-employed, they have to respect our autonomy and independence. Half solutions can only encourage them to continue to exploit the loopholes.
We hope that in the upcoming votes, which are decisive for our future, you will defend the interests of entrepreneurs who want to remain independent and not those of platforms that choose to restrict our independence.
Amandine MAZENC, CEO of freelances platform ELANCEO
Nicolas MIDEY, Freelance, Consultant SAP Master Data
Nils WOHRER, Freelance, Project Manager « Continuous improvement »
Emmanuelle RAVELLO, Freelance, Consultant in Ecological Transition
Bénédicte DUBOIS, Freelance, Coach and trainer
Lionel CHEVRIER, Freelance, Industrial Consultant
Hélène CASCARO, Freelance, Consultant in Strategy and Cultural Marketing
Sébastien COURAPIED, Freelance, Certified Professional Trainer and Coach
Delphine CHAPELOU, Freelance, Quality Auditor-Trainer Consultant
Eva HENRY-KUHNE, Freelance, Digital Marketing Consultant
Alexandra SERY, Freelance, Consultant in Prevention and Post Burn Out Reconstruction
Yolande GEYER, Freelance, Professional Development Coach and Trainer
Bertrand KAUFFMANN, Freelance, International Recruiter, Operational Coach