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U.S. Far Behind On Workers' Rights: Report

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by Patters, Nov 22, 2009.

  1. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    U.S. Far Behind On Workers' Rights: Report - ABC News

    A new study released Tuesday, Raising the Global Floor, examines workers' rights across 190 nations worldwide and finds that the U.S. lags behind nearly all other countries. ....

    The findings do not look good for the U.S. While 177 nations guarantee paid leave for new mothers and another 163 nations mandate paid sick leave, the U.S. requires neither.

    The U.S. also falls behind 164 countries that guarantee paid annual vacation, 157 countries that guarantee workers one day of rest each week, 74 countries that offer paid leave to new fathers and 48 countries that allow paid time off to care for sick children.
  2. PatriotsReign

    PatriotsReign On the Roster

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    This topic reflects my liberal side...I agree with your post 100%. I think we should be leading the world in worker's rights...not trailing developing nations.

    We should all be guaranteed at least one day off per week and definately all have paid vacations if one is a full time worker.

    I also support guidelines for salaried employees as well. Companies can force salaried employees to work 24/7 if they want to and fire you if you fail to comply.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  3. alvinnf

    alvinnf Rookie

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    Don't worry once we all get on welfare and Obamacare, we'll be able to sew soccer balls with equal vigor!
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  4. Patsfanin Philly

    Patsfanin Philly Rookie

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    #95 Jersey

    The Work, Family, and Equity Index (WFEI): Measuring governmental performance around the world in meeting the needs of working families.


    Reading the actual article (link above) and examining the maps leads me to believe that there is an inherent bias on the part of the authors. There is no discussion of child labor laws and worker safety, areas in which the United States is head and shoulders above many in the rest of the world and is just as, if not more important for working conditions.
    Some of the maps could lead a reasonable person to be skeptical. Look at Somalia and Afghanistan as places that guarantee breastfeeding breaks and paid leave for mothers and as examples of countries with better conditions than the US. Some of these countries don't even have functional economies, let alone letting women into the workforce in some of these countries. The Family Medical Leave Act addresses some of these concerns. While it doesn’t apply to small businesses (under 25 or 50 employees IIRC) actual conditions may be better than those that are required or worse in other countries. How many companies in the US don’t offer sick or paid vacation for their employees? I t may not be mandated but I’m willing to bet than an overwhelming majority do so to keep their employees.
    [FONT=&quot] Is it perfect here in the USA? Far from it but I think it’s a lot better than being in the bottom ten. Ask a coal miner in China, a factory worker in Thailand or a teacher in rural Afghanistan whether they’d rather have working conditions in their country of the US?? What may be guaranteed by law may not be actually applied where in the US it may not be mandated but usually is given to emplyees.[/FONT]
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  5. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The union movement needs a rebirth... those folks who brought you the weekend and overtime.
  6. ljuneau

    ljuneau Rookie

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    And GM and Chrysler
  7. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The unions designed the cars, told the folks in the glass tower how many to produce, how to market them... and not to look at the new Japanese Vehicles:rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:...

    Unions are a convenient scapegoat, but they have given back more than their share in the auto industry... funny how you never hear the legacy cost in any other industry, except for the auto industry.. never hear the legacy cost of a senator or representative, never hear the legacy cost for the idiots who f...ed up wall street, never hear the legacy for an armed forces guy who retires at 39 years old after serving 20 years... the auto workers are the only legacy cost mentioned, that works real well.
  8. Mrs.PatsFanInVa

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    #24 Jersey

    Personally speaking, I don't get paid sick leave or paid vacation.
  9. sdaniels7114

    sdaniels7114 Rookie

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    I like the laws as we have them now. The best thing for the American worker is a strong economy. Then benefits come by way of workers voting with their feet. You don't need a law that says you must have one day off per week if the economy's so strong that all the good workers end up migrating to the places that choose to extend that benefit.
  10. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    :eek: I'm with Sdaniels in the sense that the system in place is ok. We could always tweek things a little, but the part of the beauty, or attraction in the US, is the ability to earn a good living. Workers are free to leave a job they don't like too.

    I have an issue with the article in many ways, but mostly, my issue is with labeling paid sick leave and such, as "workers right". Since when should a worker have a right to paid leave? LAst I checked the money being paid to employees, belongs to the owners of the companies in question. No one has a right to demand that their boss pay them to stay home, for any reason. Mind you, this isn't to say that Montgomery Burns is awesome or something, but the only things a worker has a "right" to, are a safe working environment, labor protections, a fair wage, etc. As an employer, if I have to pay people to stay home for 3-6 months, I'll go out of business. Furthermore, I'll have to charge more to compensate for that lost production, or if not, pay less to the employees I do hire. I think the fundamentals of our system are fine. I do think some tweeks would be nice though.
  11. Patters

    Patters Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Sweden was very focused on family values. When I lived there, new moms and dads were guaranteed 6 months with pay to be used however they wanted (e.g., both mom and dad could stay home for 3 months, or one parent could stay home for 6 months, etc.), everyone even McDonald's employees got 5 weeks of vacation, all new construction was required to ensure that employees had offices (or work spaces) with windows, everyone had health care, everyone had a pension plan. Overall, there was far less crime in Sweden and the standard of living was far higher. My taxes were high (around 50%), but it was well worth it. Swedes live longer than Americans and their children have real childhoods, far less subject to the kinds of violence and porn that are so prevalent in the US. That said, when I lived in Sweden, it was in the 1990s, before the Internet age really took off.
  12. Patsfanin Philly

    Patsfanin Philly Rookie

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    #95 Jersey

    You are in the minority if you work fulltime but if you work part time, it's more the norm.

    Paid vacation benefits, March 2009, The Editor's Desk

    Very small percentage of employees don’t get paid vacation after one year of service…looks like 5% or so.


    Who Receives Sick Leave? - Economix Blog - NYTimes.com

    [FONT=&quot]77% of full time workers get paid sick leave while 28% of part time workers get it.[/FONT]
  13. bruschimania

    bruschimania Rookie

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    As an American living abroad, I definitely have it better as an employee in a third world country (oddly enough, subcontracted to an American company who I can almost guarantee does not have these rights) than I ever had when I worked in the US.

    There's no limit on "sick pay", as I had with many jobs in the US (if I got sick pay at the jobs), my vacation's better, my health care insurance (but that's an ENTIRELY different can of worms).

    I love and miss my country, but as far as employee rights go, I'm far better off here in Latin America.
  14. Mrs.PatsFanInVa

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    #24 Jersey

    Actually, I work 6 days one week and 5 days the next. Sounds full-time to me.

    Um, no it doesn't - at least not according to other sources:

    A poll, conducted last year by the Opinion Research Corporation, found that 29 percent of American workers got no paid vacation at all last year, and half received less than a week off.

    http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/11/03/who-receives-sick-leave/


    • Employees of small businesses in the U.S. are less likely to have any paid vacation (70 percent) than those in medium and large establishments (86 percent).

    • Lower-wage workers in the U.S. (those making less than $15 per hour) are even worse off. Only 69 percent have paid vacation, compared to 88 percent of higher-wage workers


    Union Labor News: No-Vacation Nation: 25% Get NO Paid Vacation

    [FONT=&quot]77% of full time workers get paid sick leave while 28% of part time workers get it.[/FONT][/QUOTE]

    Um, no - not really. From your own article:

    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 61 percent of private-sector workers receive sick leave. But people employed by state and local governments have a much better chance of being able to stay home if they get sick: 89 percent of these workers have sick leave benefits.

    The bureau found that 52 percent of workers employed by private-sector businesses with 1 to 99 workers had paid sick leave, compared with 80 percent for those employed by private companies with 500 or more workers

    And, as everyone here keeps saying, it's small business that keeps the country alive.
  15. Patsfanin Philly

    Patsfanin Philly Rookie

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    #95 Jersey

    [/quote]

    Uh, really...Did you even read the article because the quote below is from it?? Yes, you have a greater chance of getting sick leave in the public sector but the statistics include ALL workers, public and private. I didn't cherrypick the stats.

    >>> [FONT=&quot]Access to sick leave also varies by profession and membership in a union. The bureau found that 77 percent of full-time workers received paid sick leave, while just 28 percent of part-time workers did.[/FONT]<<<
    What I said was that if you are working fulltime ( 36 hours or so ) and you are not receiving paid sick leave, you are in the minority. You are working 5-6 days but how many total hours at each job? I'm not dissing you but if you're working 20 hours per week, that's part-time, even if you are working 5 or 6 days a week.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  16. Mrs.PatsFanInVa

    Mrs.PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    You are working 5-6 days but how many total hours at each job? I'm not dissing you but if you're working 20 hours per week, that's part-time, even if you are working 5 or 6 days a week.[/QUOTE]

    It's just one job and I work 36 to 44 hours per week.

    I know the difference between full and part time. :)

    As was pointed out in your article, most of us who work for "small businesses" don't get paid sick leave or paid vacation days. I consider myself lucky to get 4 paid holidays since a lot of people who work for small businesses don't even get that.
  17. Patsfanin Philly

    Patsfanin Philly Rookie

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    #95 Jersey

    That's not what it said. Most means majority and the majority of full time workers get paid sick leave. It's the BLS, and I would trust them, more than a survey.

    >
    >>> [FONT=&quot]Access to sick leave also varies by profession and membership in a union. The bureau found that 77 percent of full-time workers received paid sick leave, while just 28 percent of part-time workers did.[/FONT]<<<
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  18. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Here is an article in last weeks LA Times..

    For many ill with the flu, staying home isn't an option -- latimes.com

  19. Mrs.PatsFanInVa

    Mrs.PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    And that would be because the government never lies, right?
  20. Patsfanin Philly

    Patsfanin Philly Rookie

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    #95 Jersey

    It was from the NY Times and Bureau of Labor Statistics released in July under a Democratic Administration...... I can understand your skepticism.....
    Seriously, is there anything you guys believe? If it comes from Fox, not credible, If it comes from a conservative blog, not credible. now the NY Times and the Gov't Bureau of Labor Statistics isn't believable, even under a Democratic administration...... If you disagree with something, just challenge the source.
    It's too bad that you don't have paid sick leave and I mean that sincerely. In my industry, a small business, it's the norm to offer 2 weeks paid vacation and a week of paid sick leave to start and that's what I give my employees. They can use any combination of sick/personal/vacation for 3 weeks a year or roll it over or take it as cash at year's end, which goes to 4 weeks after 5 years. We have 8 paid holidays a year (1/1, Memorial Day, 7/4, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, 12/25, birthday and a half day each for Black Friday and Christmas eve) It's expensive but it's what it takes to keep good employees.
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2009

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