Employers should consider conditions of workers

Kian Hagerman
Mesa Legend

photo Kian HagermanIt seems the days of companies valuing their employees are a thing of the past, something for the history books. All too often, I hear from people that are given the bare minimum of hours that are available, regardless of how skilled they are at their job. Employers would rather hire more people, and spread the work evenly (and thinly) between them all, than even entertain the thought of giving someone a paycheck they can live off. The “job creators” come on news shows to talk about how those who are struggling should work three or even four jobs to get by, rather than accept financial assistance from the government. This they do just prior to running off with their profits, where they can make full use of that golden parachute they built out of the struggles of those living paycheck to paycheck. What the recipients of trust funds don’t seem to understand is that without stability and confidence in your employer, employees will have little reason to demonstrate loyalty. If the typical workday for someone is a fight for survival, there is little room for anything else. People are expected to be at the disposal of their jobs, but at the drop of a hat, that same job will fire without warning or reason.

The changes in laws that are antagonistic to workers, like right-to-work statutes that weaken the effectiveness of unions and allow non-union workers to be employed, don’t help matters. Competitiveness in a global economy is often touted as justification for stripping workers of their rights. Does America really seek to compete with countries like China, by degrading working conditions to their level? Encouraging the improvement of labor laws in countries where workers are exploited would be the more humane solution.Starting at home, would do a lot to foster the good will of our native workforce.  One potential law that would do a lot of good, is restricting the hiring of new employees if you already employ qualified individuals capable of the work who aren’t already working full time and want the extra time. Hiring more people just to circumvent required provisions for full-time employees may be seen as shrewd in the board room, but it’s callous to anyone with a conscience. Depriving “job creators” the cover of policy that they hide behind, would force them to do the right thing.

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These are archived stories from Mesa Legend editions before Fall 2018. See article for corresponding author.

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