Sometimes I think I've heard it all. Then something happens that takes my breath away.
Current Wisconsin law requires employers who own or operate factories or retail stores to give their workers at least 24 consecutive hours off every seven days. Under Grothman and Born's proposal, workers could volunteer to work seven straight days without a rest day.That's right, workers, you won't have the legal right to a day off every week anymore. Buh, bye!
Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce, the state's largest business organization, brought the idea to them, the two Republicans said. The organization was doing a study on discrepancies between federal and state law and discovered federal law imposes no such limits on consecutive work days as long as minimum wage and overtime payment requirements are met, Born said.
While Republican sponsors continue to stress that giving up the one day off work is "voluntary", anyone who has ever worked can tell you how "voluntary" that's going to become when jobs are in short supply and folks find themselves pinked slipped for getting close to retirement age or having the wrong bumper sticker on their cars.
opponents warned the only choice employees will have is work the extra hours or lose their jobs. The measure also would give workers who can work the extra day an advantage over workers who want to spend a day with their family, they said.Of course, business will be delighted if their proposed legislation becomes law. Instead of actually going out and hiring more people, business can just keep on doing what they've been doing; making their current workers work harder and longer so the profits just keep rolling in at ever increasing levels.
Rep. Cory Mason, D-Racine, called the legislation a "slap in the face to ordinary working folks in Wisconsin."
"Workers fought long and hard for a 40-hour work week and the weekend," Mason said. "People deserve at least a day off a week. It's a legal protection for a reason."
Limits were placed on working because the need for rest was understood. Business hated the idea of limited work to 40 hours per week and the initial idea of paid vacations (paying someone to do nothing???) was met with jeers. They like to call all the shots, make people do what they want them to do, when they want them to, provide as little health and safety measures as they can get away with, and never, ever be held responsible for anything.
There has been far too much catering to business interests. Far too much laxity shown, way too much deregulation and failure to enforce those regulations that still exist. Yet, business keeps on wanting more and more.
Our brutal economy, caused largely by catering to business and financial interests already cases the skirting of overtime laws by forcing people to have not one, but often two or more jobs - none of which is legally mandated to pay overtime because each of those jobs carefully maintains 40 hours of work per week or less. As a result, a worker could put in 80 hours per week and get straight time hours for every single hour and NOT ever meet the mandatory cap of 60 hours per week that exists because the hours are logged on different jobs.
Even God rested on the 7th day. Shouldn't workers?
That is all for now from the Third World Country of WisKochStan.