Career Day in 2014

Gary Varvel_Career DayGary Varvel Cartoon

This is sad, but it is a reality of today’s economy. There are young college graduates finding themselves working in fast food and/or taking more than 1 part-time job. They thought they would be employed by an organization, big company or etc. making a nice salary with good benefits. Do you support and did you vote for Barack Obama for President?  We are now into the 6th year of his presidency. It is not intelligent to continue to blame George W. Bush for the state of the economy 6 years after his presidency. This economy that delivers low skilled full-time and non benefit part-time jobs over skilled full-time jobs with benefits is the Obama economy.

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Why Not at the Beginning with Minimum Wage?

Liberal Logic 101_Ann Coulter_MW

Yes! If this minimum wage thing is so important, why did not Pres. Obama put it to the Democrats when they had just about the highest numbers in both Houses of Congress? The Pres. is using the minimum wage to divert us from his failed policies such as the ACA (Affordable Care Act) which is hurting so many more people than it is helping across this country with its high co-pays, deductibles, and its non coverage for infants. The ACA is also having a negative affect on employment. Go here for one man’s sharing of his experience with Pres. Obama.

Now that I think of those first two years of the Obama administration, I do remember cries for increasing employment and raising the minimum wage from the left over health care. The administration ignored those cries as the Pres. assigned certain members of the House and Senate to come together with a health care bill. Working on ways to increase employment really never happened. So finally, I leave you with this.

$9.00 an Hour for an Ignored Buisness

I watched Fox News’ Bulls and Bears. one of the topics was the President request to raise the minimum wage to $9.00 an hour. All on the panel except for one liberal guest panelist was against it. One panelist pointed out that it was a wage for working teens. Well that is not really true.

Child care1In all the arguments, I hear about minimum wage jobs constantly from the fiscally conservative side, they make it sound like a person within a year is making far more. The business of child care where there are minimum wage paychecks or close to it abound, is completely ignored. I know Pres. Obama’s call to raise the minimum wage is not going well with child care business owners.

As a child care teacher, years ago, I was fortunate to worked for a non-profit well-known church organization that paid well and offered great benefits for some years. Being hired during the good times, my hourly pay grew into the early teens per hour before I moved on into center directing.  In the later years before they closed down most of their child care centers, new hires did not get health benefits and received the minimum wage or as close to it as possible.

As a child care director working for a for-profit business chain. I had to learn quickly how my decisions on pay for new hires affected the profit/loss on my center. I wanted experience classroom teachers also called assistant group supervisors to make at least $8.00 an hour. I wanted to pay Lead teachers, also called group supervisors, with experience at least around $11.00 an hour. My profit/loss statements had me bringing that hourly pay down to $10.00.

When I moved on to another for-profit center around 2006, the corporate head took me to task for starting an experienced classroom teacher/assistant group supervisor at $8.15 an hour. The highest she wanted me to start a classroom teacher was $7.50 an hour. If that $900 an hour becomes law, child care businesses will be cutting teacher hours and/or raising child care fees for parents to much higher levels.

Union Foot Shooting

Glenn Foden Cartoon

Shooting your self in the foot! Yes, that is what the Hostess Baker’s Union did to itself. The result of their striking the Hostess Baking Company is an unavoidable trip to the unemployment line. And sadly, thousands more of the non-union Hostess employees will also lengthen that unemployment line. Down  in Philly which is the city of most of my life,  a Hostess plant is adding hundreds to the already burgeoning unemployment rolls. With the continuing unhealthy job situation, what is going on in a union striker’s mind these days?

Forcing Employers to Give Employees More Leave Time

I worked for a well-known church organization as a child care teacher. In getting extra time off from work, I remember back in the early 80s, a co-worker asked to take two weeks off to go on short-term missions trip. There was some hemming and hawing coming from management as they waited to hear from headquarters on which way to go on the matter. The co-worker was finally given permission and left with other church members on a 2 week missionary trip to Haiti. The unpaid time off was given in addition to vacation time. A substitute did her assignments.

A few years later and from that point on with the change in management (and at headquarters), if you did not have enough accumulated vacation time to use, the answer to future short-termed 2/3 week missionary trip requests was an immediate “NO.” The new reaction from headquarters was if you can go unpaid, then they were wasting money on you with paid benefits (and back then, those benefits were extra ordinary for a child care teacher).  If something important was going on during your requested time off, like a state inspection, you could still be told “NO,” even when you had accumulated paid vacation days.

Someone, I know made plans to go on a short-term missions trip to an African country some years ago, which was a little longer than 2 weeks. The person was initially given permission. On their last day of work, this person was told “NO.” The person went on the missions trip anyway and returned to unemployment.

This Illinois discrimination case where Muslim math teacher, Safoorah Khan was denied her request of  3 weeks unpaid leave  from her middle school to make the pilgrimage to Mecca known as the Hajj is supported by the Department of Justice – DOJ. Her pilgrimage was just before final exams. Ms. Khan resigned to make the Hajj. The DOJ says the school board violated Title Seven of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which  prohibits an employer from discriminating on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin or religion. Now did this civil rights act really apply to Ms. Khan’s denied unpaid leave request?

I think the DOJ opened a big can of worms to say the least! Accommodating Ms. Khan’s extended absence at the expense of her students during the school year goes against the best educational interests of schools. You know employees are watching to see how what the final outcome will be. If I were still a child care director, I could see employees sighting the DOJ and Title Seven in trying to wrangle enormous amounts of time off for suspect spiritual reasons and being self-assured of their job being in place for them on return.

Employees being out other than through the use of rightly accrued benefit time,is rather devastating. That is the case with child care. These days most centers do not have budget money alloted for substitutes as some did in the 80s. Well, employers start preparing for the onslaught of leave time requests and legal battles if and when you say “NO.”