February 21, 2013
Last week, Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) introduced the Part-Time Worker Bill of Rights which would help eliminate the incentive for employers to drop health coverage for their part-time workers. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) penalizes employers who fail to provide health insurance to full-time workers but includes no such penalty for part-timers (defined as working less than 30 hours a week).
This loophole has driven some national employers to announce plans to reduce workers’ hours in order to avoid the penalty. Walmart dropped part-time health coverage last year. The Part-Time Worker Bill of Rights seeks to level the playing field and protect the millions of part-time workers in retail and other service industries.
Workers are encouraged to contact their Members of Congress this week while Senators and Representatives are in their home states and districts. You can find the full text of the bill here.
The UFCW continues to use every avenue possible—whether through the regulatory process or legislation—to strengthen the ACA and protect quality, union-negotiated health benefits. The Part-Time Worker Bill of Rights is a part of that effort.