“A key issue is that we’re a more unequal society than all of the countries we looked at, and that creates a different work environment where people feel they may be penalized for taking time off,” Schmitt said in an interview.
In the states, that fear at least partly reflects the widening gap between what top corporate managers earn and what rank-and-file workers bring home, Schmitt suggested. In the U.S., where corporate culture often seems to equate taking time off with slacking, many employees feel they are effectively penalized for going on vacation, as promotions and other rewards go to people more able and willing to work around the clock.
This is probably one of the saddest things to happen to our country. In my younger days we all used to thoroughly enjoy our annual vacations. Now we seem to be pretty much at the bottom of the list in this regard. We no longer have union representation to get us a few more paid days off as we used. Let’s face it, our employers just don’t see much sense in paying us to not come to work.
There are just too many of us who are so insecure in our current employment to even dream about asking our bosses for a few days off. We are afraid if we do that he will start looking around for a less demanding employee. From the graph above most of the rest of the OECD nations get about three times the vacation/holiday time off as we do.
I’m sure that the upper echelons of the business world still get their vacations. After all they have all those vacation homes they have to visit. But the grunts at the lower levels had vacations stripped away years ago. Since teachers are primarily a publicly funded occupation and have strong, probably too strong, unions they still manage to get huge amounts of time off but they are about the only ones but that will likely change in the not too distant future. The private sector threw vacations out the window when they jettisoned our pension funds, healthcare and even our sick days.
They say that we Baby Boomer are probably the last to see our work environment to be better than our parents. How those who followed us let that happen I have no idea. I salute all those countries from France to Canada who have managed to keep hold of more than two weeks off a year. Good for them….