Did you hear?... U.S. lags behind other countries in helping employees balance home and work

Here's news we didn't know. Uh-uh, sure. A researcher at Michigan State University has found that the United States lags behind other countries in helping employees balance home and work.
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Here's news we didn't know. Uh-uh, sure. A researcher at Michigan State University has found that the United States lags behind other countries in helping employees balance home and work. In the Netherlands, for example, employees can request longer or shorter hours and employers are required to honor the request unless they have a bona fide business reason to refuse. In Germany, employees can work more than the federally set 35-hour workweek and "bank" the hours to use for paid time off. Suggestions from the author Peter Berg, whose research was published by the Economic Policy Institute: Allow shorter workweeks and flexibility for workers. Allow workers to request up to a 20-percent reduction in hours and pro-rated reductions in pay and benefits. Invest in day care, elder care, and before- and after-school programs. He said that employers today expect to be entitled to "unencumbered workers," or employees who work as if they had a partner or other caregiver at home, which may not be true. SNEWS® View: Our industries are supposed to encourage recreation and fitness. But how many of us hardly practice what we preach anymore? Or not as much as we'd like or should? Not a good example. We'd like to see more companies in our respective industries encourage employees to flex their hours to be able to fit in some fitness or recreational activities, or perhaps work longer days, so they can take off early on Friday for some adventure. Or even just take longer lunches for a workout to stay in shape.

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