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Public Servant sick days and their costs


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#41 jonny

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 02:27 PM

You have no idea what you are talking about.


I used to work in government, and I have many close friends and colleagues who currently work in government, but I don't have a clue.
OK :thumbsup:

A flex day is simply a way to work the same number of hours over a slightly shorter number of days. Nothing "bonus" about it. You work the same number of hours for the same amount of pay.


It's a perk.

Let's walk through a scenario, shall we? You are offered two jobs. They are both dream jobs in your field of work. The pay is the same, the vacation is the same, the benefits are the same, and you are otherwise indifferent about working for these two particular organizations. The only difference is that Job A offers flex days while Job B does not. Which offer would you accept?

And yes, it is available in other industries where an employer wants to offer something the employee wants without having to pay any more money.


If an employee wants it, and the employer is willing to provide it, how is it not a perk? It's totally a benefit to working in government.

#42 pherthyl

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:01 PM

There are employees who abuse the system in both the public and private sector. I think that for many people the simple fact is that if they are offered something they are going to take it, especially if they see their co-worker getting the benefit.


I read somewhere years ago that in North America people overall tend to treat sick days as vacation days because they don't have much vacation. When you only get 2 or 3 weeks a year it makes sense that people need that extra time off whether they are sick or not. In europe where many countries have minimum 6 weeks off, that practice is not common, and sick days are actually used only for illness.

#43 tedward

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:29 PM

Wow, way to change the facts to suit your argument. You said they were "bonus" which means above and beyond normal salary.

...I don't have a clue.

You said it. :judge:

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#44 jonny

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:38 PM

Wow, way to change the facts to suit your argument. You said they were "bonus" which means above and beyond normal salary.


I'm not changing my facts or argument there Mr. Condescension.

It is a bonus in the respect that it is a working term above and beyond what the employer would normally be expected to provide to the employee.

Normally an employer would be expected to provide things such as the agreed upon financial compensation, safe working conditions and a healthy workplace free of harrassment and discrimination. They would generally not be required to provide flexible working hours.

I see you chose to ignore commenting on my scenario example.

#45 PulpVictor

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:49 PM

Sounds good, all workers should get proper paid sick days. When ever I read an article like this it doesn't get me upset at unions or government workers, but gives me pity for those working for cheap nasty companies that don't offer such basic things.


Those 'cheap, nasty companies' are the ones that are driving this economy.

#46 pherthyl

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 03:54 PM

They are bonus days off. It's a perk you don't commonly see in other industries.


Those two things aren't related. Just because it's a rare perk in the private sector doesn't mean it's a bonus day off.

One of the tricks employees use is to claim they are only taking 30 minute lunches so they don't actually have to work a longer day.


So? Assuming they actually do take a 30 min lunch instead of an hour, what's wrong with that? They are working an extra 30 min who cares if it's in the middle of the day or at the end?

Employees also commonly (unofficially) bank these flex days to combine them with long weekends and vacation days to extend vacation.


Every department has their own policy on this. Most places do not allow this kind of banking according to my wife (BC Govt). People can shift their flex days by a week or two (often in order to hit a long weekend, nothing wrong with that), but they don't generally bank them.

#47 pherthyl

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:05 PM

Let's walk through a scenario, shall we? You are offered two jobs. They are both dream jobs in your field of work. The pay is the same, the vacation is the same, the benefits are the same, and you are otherwise indifferent about working for these two particular organizations. The only difference is that Job A offers flex days while Job B does not. Which offer would you accept?


Of course it's a perk, but you said it is bonus days off. It isn't.
In your example, Job B might have an 8 hour day 5 days a week, while Job A has an 8 hour 53 minute day with every second friday off. Both jobs have a 40 hour week on average.

The only bonus is flexibility.

If an employee wants it, and the employer is willing to provide it, how is it not a perk? It's totally a benefit to working in government.


How is that limited to government? Nothing stops the private sector from doing the same thing. Most places don't like it because they want people there during the work week, but in jobs where that is not required it can happen.

#48 PulpVictor

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:05 PM

We have too much government for such a tiny country. The problem is, as was so cogently pointed out by Spanky, there are many people struggling, and I include myself, that to see the inordinate wastefulness that is blatant in every level of government makes non-government workers very frustrated and angry. It does not surprise me that going underground and working for cash and evading the exorbitant rates we pay is becoming more the norm than the unusual. If there are not some reforms, we will fall apart as a country.

#49 pherthyl

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:10 PM

We have too much government for such a tiny country. The problem is, as was so cogently pointed out by Spanky, there are many people struggling, and I include myself, that to see the inordinate wastefulness that is blatant in every level of government makes non-government workers very frustrated and angry. It does not surprise me that going underground and working for cash and evading the exorbitant rates we pay is becoming more the norm than the unusual. If there are not some reforms, we will fall apart as a country.


So no data then? Business taxes in Canada are very low http://www.cbc.ca/ne...porate-tax.html
and income taxes also used to be significantly higher.

I'm against waste as much as the next guy, but you do actually have to support your argument with specific examples of where the waste is to be credible.

#50 PulpVictor

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 04:59 PM

So no data then? Business taxes in Canada are very low http://www.cbc.ca/ne...porate-tax.html
and income taxes also used to be significantly higher.

I'm against waste as much as the next guy, but you do actually have to support your argument with specific examples of where the waste is to be credible.


Data? I am sure that if I had a government job I could afford to take the time to find the data.

Our BUSINESS taxes a low, agreed. Now let's talk about the rest of our taxes. I think that the story that began this thread is credible enough.

#51 North Shore

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 05:25 PM

^ Given that our current National Debt is somewhere north of $500 Billion dollars (and rising), I think that a fairly coherent argument could be made that our taxes are, in fact, too low...
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#52 PulpVictor

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 05:40 PM

eh?

http://taxpayer.com/...lance-bc-budget


http://taxpayer.com/...ate-pay-gap-now

#53 PulpVictor

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 05:55 PM

When we collectively finally realize that we cannot pay for the bloated public service created in better times, including the inflated pensions, there will be a reckoning. Why should I pay more taxes for more people to retire comfortably when I will likely never be able to retire?

#54 North Shore

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 06:29 PM

Oh, silly me. How could I think that the deficit/debt is comprised of anything more than inflated public-sector wages and benefits!:bow:
Say, what's that mountain goat doing up here in the mist?

#55 PulpVictor

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 06:46 PM

What's the point in being facetious? Why else would there be public debt?

#56 Benezet

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 06:53 PM

...I think that the story that began this thread is credible enough.


The story may seem like credible news to you, but it merely quotes a report prepared by a "research analyst" for the Canadian Federation of Independent Business — and as you know, the CFIB exists to lobby governments for low taxes for business and deregulation in favour of business.

The story does not include any objective analysis by anyone, and the only commentary is a quote of an insult from the head the CFIB toward public-sector workers en masse.

As for the CFIB report itself, its conclusion sets aside the data and moves directly to speculation, throwing in the inflammatory phrase 'pure entitlement' — yet the only thing the data shows is that public-sector workers take a few more sick days a year than others.

I'm sorry, but I can't find credibility in something that doesn't try to examine why something happens.

#57 LJ

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 07:01 PM

Vacation is a benefit only if you use it. There is a common misconception that public servants get to accrue vacation till retirement if they do not use it. So if your retirement date is Jan 2013 and you have accrued 3 months of vacation over your career you can leave in October. This does not happen.


OK I'm trying but I still don't understand your original statement.

Say you get 20 days of vacation each year, but your office is so busy you can only get 10 days off. What happens to the other 10 days? I'm pretty sure you're getting paid out for them, because you couldn't get to use them.

In that case vacation is still a benefit, you are just taking it in a monetary form rather than time off.

Please inform me if that is indeed not the case, and you just lose the vacation time with no compensation, which is what you implied.
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#58 G-Man

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 08:42 PM

It depends if you are in the union of management. Generally speaking you carryover for one year any vacation you did not use and the subsequent year you are paid out for them. However a vacation day is worth more then a paid out day as you do not get taxed as highly.

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#59 Bingo

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 08:45 PM

Why should I pay more taxes for more people to retire comfortably when I will likely never be able to retire?


If you are talking about Public Service or Canada Pensions, that is how the system works. The working person helps to pay for the retired person. My father had only paid in to the Canada Pension plan after it was introduced, for 12 years, and got a pension. It was my generation that contributed to his pension, and now my children will help pay for mine.

Why do you think you will "never be able to retire"?

#60 North Shore

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Posted 05 December 2012 - 08:52 PM

What's the point in being facetious? Why else would there be public debt?


Umm, bank bailouts, sewage treatment plants, olympic games, stadium roofs, ornamental ponds, corporate welfare, oversized military, infrastructure costs for the 2nd biggest country, medicare - pick your pony. Left or Right, there's all sorts of things that a person could point to and say: "That's where the debt started!"
Say, what's that mountain goat doing up here in the mist?

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