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The Trouble with Freelance and Temporary Work

The Trouble with Freelancing and Temporary Work

Since the economic downturn, it's been really tough to find a job. But there is a certain type of work that is becoming more and more readily available: temporary, freelance and contract jobs. 

Jezebel writer Laura Beck writes in We’ve Seen the Future, and You’re Freelancing:

According to a study conducted by Intuit in 2010, more than forty percent of the U.S. workforce—so, sixty million people—will be contractors, temps, and the self-employed by 2020. That's great for those of us who want to trade business casual for an all-day pajama party, but is it good news for everybody?

The problem with temporary employment, which has seen a 29% rise since 2009, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, is that it isn't great for all workers. 

Besides the obvious lack of health care and retirement benefits, there's the stress of working in an uncertain environment. 

Beck writes:

Hustling for freelance assignments can take years off your already shortened life (see above about health insurance). Further, if you're a contract worker, knowing you can be easily discarded with no reflection on the company's numbers (and no severance package!) really blows. Many companies in Silicon Valley hire multitudes of contract workers to do jobs that aren't originally envisioned as temporary. Then, if they need to cut the fat somewhere, they're able to lay those people off and not worry about explaining it to their boards or investors.

Do you think the rise in temporary and contract jobs is bad for America's workers? Log in and comment below. 

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