FORT LAUDERDALE – The climate of South Florida is perfect for retirement. Unfortunately, more and more seniors have to come out of retirement and join the gig economy to bring in some cash.
According to AARP, about 3 percent of senior citizens came out of retirement to join Uber in 2015 as a means to bring in extra income for the household. All of this time, the media has been focusing on the impact of the gig economy on millennials “younger adults” when in fact, the gig economy is more of an important source of income for retirees.
The numbers coming out of San Francisco headquarters of Uber are truly startling. According to Uber, about 24 percent of the company’s drivers are 50 or older and the number grows each year. While the gig economy offers great opportunities to earn extra cash as a side hustle, the gravity of these statistics is disconcerting because seniors and retirees are jumping into the gig economy where working as an independent contractor for online digital platforms like Uber and Lyft has numerous rewards but benefits such as worker compensation, unemployment insurance and other social safety nets and personal protections are usually inaccessible unless sought out vigorously on ones own accord.
Seniors who turned to the gig economy for income between 2012 – 2015 are more reliant on these services than millennials. According to various agencies in the Federal Government that track labor and retirement statistics, the number of Americans who earned income from the gig economy climbed from 1% to 4% from September 2012 to September 2015. Over 400,000 seniors are now dependent on some kind of gig economy opportunity for supplemental income so don’t be surprised when you order your next Uber or Lyft and an elderly retiree is behind the steering wheel. Age discrimination, one of most sinister elements of Corporate America has had a crippling effect on the labor force age 55 or older so many retirees who are unable to find traditional means of employment are turning to online platforms like Uber and Lyft for income like never before!
With more and more Americans working after retirement because their social security and savings are inadequate, the number of seniors turning to the gig economy and non-traditional means of income generation will continue to increase year after year. Even if older workers are offered traditional work, it usually comes in the form of part-time hours and consulting agreements as employers seek out means by which to minimize health and unemployment insurance costs.
Luckily, the gig economy has no concerns about age so there are relatively fewer barriers preventing seniors and retirees from profiting from the gig economy. With advancements in health care, medical therapies, elderly Americans are living longer fuller lives. As long as they can derive sustainable income from the gig economy, they will work as long as they want to work.
That’s the beauty of the online digital platform like Uber and Lyft – you can just turn off the app whenever you want. It’s just like watching TV – if you don’t like the programming, change the channel.
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It’s a great day to get out in the sunshine and just drive. Lyft and Uber takes care of everything for you — you drive, they match you with ride requests from people who value and respect the online platforms and the innovation they brings to the transportation marketplace. Are you’re retired, perhaps you live alone or suffered a recent loss of a loved one? If you answered “yes”, driving for Lyft and Uber offers you a great opportunity to make some side hustle income and connect with humanity on a very personal and intimate level; often free of judgment. The transparency of the Lyft and Uber platforms presents unique Moments of unimaginable Clarity. Sometimes, people just need someone to talk to, express themselves and someone to listen to and help them resolve their problems. And even though the ride will soon end (“everything that has a Beginning, has an End”), we go in Peace and take the blessings of our dialogue and friendship as inspiration to embrace a new Day.
In this new Day, The Universe is preparing you for something bigger than you could ever imagine!
You’ll meet some nice people, share a laugh or two, maybe even pray together for a Healing Miracle for a Loved One and touch each other’s Souls. With every breath, you have a Moment to experience something real and to be thankful.
And if you’re lucky, you will meet again when the Universe is ready and you’ll have a chance to witness its glory (“her emergency eye surgery was a success, her retina was reattached and we are on our way to a Concert in the park”). It’s a beautiful day!
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