The paid vacation days in America are horrible compared to that of other countries. Vacation deprivation is causing depression in some people. Additionally, the law does not require the U.S. employers to give their employees paid time off. These are some of the questions that will get addressed: Why does America have the least paid time off? Is less vacation better for the economy? What are the employee satisfaction rates? What are public leaders doing about it?
Why does America have the least Paid Time Off?
The reason why The United States does not have as much paid vacation days compared to other countries is that the law does not mandate it. According to the Fair Labor Standards Act, the law does not require employers to give their employees paid time off. It is left up to the businesses to determine whether they want to give paid time off or not.
Is Less Vacation Better for the Economy?
No! When an employee gets little time off, productivity decreases, which is not helpful to the economy. Employees cannot perform at their best if they are stressed out from too much work. Additionally, if an employer has a valuable employee that gets sick often, they look into the various types of life insurance that would benefit the company.
Employee Satisfaction Rate in U.S. Compared to other Countries
Compared to other nations, America is among one of the countries with the least amount of paid vacation time. For example, Japan gives out ten days for the year, three days lower than the U.S at 13 days according to VPCalendar.net. Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden give out 25 days paid vacation for the year. The highest paid time off given is France with 30 days off for the year. Germany gives out 24 days, and Austria, Portugal, and Spain give out 22 days.
How Does this Fair among Public Leaders
An NPR article states that Hillary Clinton, the 2016 presidential candidate, has been emphasizing that companies should give out more paid leave to employees while on the campaign trail. This would help women to remain in the workforce per Clinton. Moreover, Senator Bernie Sanders is for paid time off as well as paid maternity leave. He mentioned this while on the presidential campaign trail.
Additionally, a few cities and states are setting up sick leave policies. President Obama is advocating a federal legislation that would get companies to hand out paid sick leave. In 2007, San Francisco, and 20 other cities and three states have pushed companies to give out paid sick leave.
According to an article in the NY Times, Oregon has passed a bill saying that businesses give their employees paid sick days to care for family members. It is the fourth state that has passed a bill requiring such measures. The topic has been a long time Democratic platform.
How Does Less Vacation affect the Health of Employees?
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), when an employee is sick, he or she is less productive. If an employee does not get time off, he or she has to call in sick. An employee can get stressed or depressed due to lack of time off. There is pressure to perform well on the job, and there is also pressure to keep the family together. When there is little to no time off given to employees, companies experience more absenteeism.
There is another issue to tackle as well, if an employee is obese, he or she will have a higher rate of absenteeism. These employees experience other types of illnesses compared to their fellow workers. The CDC further states that obese men miss two more days of work than normal-weight men. On the other hand, overweight women lose 3.9 days more work than normal-weight women.
In conclusion, Americans should get more paid time off. It would increase productivity and improve the economy on a whole. The reason for such the huge problem is that the Fair Labor Standards Act does not require companies to give paid time off. Most countries are way ahead of the U.S. in that they issue more time off to their employees for the entire year.
Presidential Candidates like Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders have been advocating paid time off to families. Additionally, an employee’s health has to be taken into consideration when it comes to holidays. It is beneficial to the company to give paid time off. It would increase productivity as well as the overall economy.
By: Vincent Stokes