Thursday, September 11, 2008

Lying With Stats: "Sick-Leave" Version

The local "community organizers" who want paid sick-leave published a study stating that paid sick leave is good for everyone, employers included.

OK. If that's their story, then why do they use half-truth to argue the case?

According to the study, some 122,230 Milwaukee workers — 47% of the private sector workforce — lack paid sick days

HALF! "lack" paid sick days?

Not really.

Under the proposed ordinance, more than 77,000 workers would get paid sick days as a new benefit. The remaining 44,000 might have paid time off they can use for sickness, but it may not be as flexible or there may be a penalty for using it, said Amy Stear, state director of 9to5

Here's what Stear means: under some benefit plans, workers are allowed "X days" of paid-time-off--which they can use for vacations, personal days, and sick days. Under that regime, if you burn all of your paid-time-off for sick days, you are not eligible for paid vacation days.

She calls that "a penalty."

Yah. Like if you spend your entire paycheck on food, you are "penalized" because there's nothing left over for the car payment. Right-O!!

The ordinance would require businesses to offer 9 paid sick days/year, prorated for part-time work at the rate of 1 hour paid-sick-leave per 30 hours worked.

There are "Simon Legree" employers in this world. I don't doubt it. But generally speaking, they don't attract employees, nor do they retain them for long.

Conversely, there are slackers in the workforce. Somehow, 9to5's proposal doesn't address them.

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