A group of technology companies serving the so-called gig economy are teaming up to push enrollment for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
The coordinated effort is formally called Tech United for Independent Access to Healthcare, and it's led by Fiverr, Etsy, Postmates, Care.com and DoorDash, in partnership with California-based health insurance startup Stride Health.
The aim is to provide freelancers and other gig workers with up to date, pertinent information regarding the 2017 Open Enrollment period for state healthcare exchanges.
Up to 162 million people in the US and EU participate in the independent workforce, according to a 2016 report from the McKinsey Global Institute -- somewhere between 20 to 30 percent of the working-age population.
Another report from the JP Morgan Chase Institute found that nearly 25 million people who filed tax returns in the US in 2014 were the owners of a sole proprietorship. In terms of healthcare enrollment, roughly 1.4 million people who purchased coverage from the ACA in its first open enrollment year were considered a small-business, self-employed, or both.
In other words, the self-employed workforce is significant, and many of these workers still desire access to affordable health insurance, despite the efforts of the Trump administration to repeal the law and minimize the visibility of the ACA.
"Given how important ACA is to our community members and the recent turmoil on this issue in Washington, we figured it's time for us to do what we can to make sure they're well informed and protected," a Fiverr spokesperson told ZDNet.
The Tech United coalition says it will disseminate community-targeted information and reminders on healthcare open enrollment via various communications channels, including blogs, newsletters and social media, as well as during in-person, grassroots community events across the country. Open enrollment for the ACA begins Wednesday and ends December 15.