>The ruling released yesterday comes as the nation's employers increasingly
>rely on temporary staff to trim costs and gain flexibility. Temps,
>contractors and consultants who are not attached to a company's core work
>force make up as much as 25 percent of the nation's employment base by some
>estimates, or nearly 35 million workers.
>The number of temporary jobs in the United States rose 577 percent from 1982
>to 1998, according to the General Accounting Office, while overall
>employment grew 47 percent.
From 0.6% of total employment in 1980 to 1.4% in 1990 to about 2.5% today. I have no idea where these 25% estimates come from. The BLS's survey <http://stats.bls.gov/news.release/conemp.toc.htm> shows less than 5% of workers in contingent arrangements, which includes employee leasing and independent contractors as well as temp firms. Many consultants are hardly weak and dependent workers.