The Null Device

Posts matching tags 'holidays'


Under John Howard's industrial-relations reforms, workers will be able to cash in 2 weeks of paid leave. Which is how the Tories put it; the unions are warning that employers could insist on employees waiving two weeks of leave; the Howard government has refused to prevent this from happening, claiming that Australian workers need to become more globally competitive. Given that Australians already work longer hours than many other countries (including Europe, the USA and Japan), this argument seems spurious.

High-value employees will, of course, be able to benefit from the increased flexibility and insist on the full four weeks (or even more; some companies, for example, give workers an option to do the opposite of this deal, and take extra unpaid leave); meanwhile, deskilled and interchangeable employees will probably get a US-style 10 days' leave a year. Then again, given that a lot of such employees work casual jobs, and don't get leave entitlements, one could argue that not much will change.

No word on whether leave loading or long-service leave (an artefact of a time when many of Australia's workers were European immigrants who desired to visit families abroad) will survive the reforms, though I wouldn't bet on it.

australia holidays industrial relations work work-life balance 2


In the US, workers get on average 10 days of vacation time a year. Americans are not actually legally entitled to vacations, and the leave they take is given to them by their employers out of the goodness of their hearts; many jobs start off with 5 days of leave per year, and some employees negotiate unpaid leave or to do work whilst on their vacation. Of course, since there is no legal entitlement to vacation time, when times are tough, workers take less vacation time as not to be seen as dispensible. But the industrious American workforce has adapted to this admirably, for example learning to take a few long weekends a year instead of a long holiday.

In contrast, workers in China get 15 legally mandated days off per year, sararimen in Japan get 10 (and take 17.5 on average), and countries like Australia and the UK give their employees 20 days off. And the communist wine-drinkin' surrender monkeys of Europe have even more. I wonder how long until there is a push by the WTO or IMF or someone to abolish these mandates by international "free trade" treaty, by defining them as "expropriation" (i.e., requiring multinational corporations to give workers paid leave is equivalent to nationalising their assets, and thus not on), and to harmonise all of McWorld on the US model?

holidays society usa work work-life balance 4

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