Dee DePass has been a Star Tribune business reporter since 1993, covering small business, financial institutions, manufacturing and, most recently, the economy. Originally from New York, Dee came to Minnesota after earning her master's in journalism at the University of Maryland and her undergraduate degree at Vassar College.

Posts about Holidays

U.S. is among the stingiest nations in world for paid worker holidays

Posted by: Dee DePass Updated: December 13, 2011 - 3:05 PM

A worldwide study by HR consulting giant Mercer has found that The United Kingdom and Poland are the most-generous countries for paid holidays and vacations. The United States is the stingiest.

 In its "Employee holiday entitlements around the world" report released Tuesday, Mercer found that by law U.K. workers generally get 28 paid vacation days plus 11 paid holidays for a total of 36 paid days off. Workers in Poland get 26 paid vacation days and 11 paid public holidays. Must be nice.

Workers in the United States surely wouldn't know. The United States has no federal law requiring companies to pay workers for holidays. In general, however, many U.S. companies give workers at least two weeks of paid vacation and up to 10 public holidays. U.S. workers tend to get more vacation time after five or 10 years on the job.

According to the study, the United States is not alone in dolling out vacation sparingly. The Philippines, Thailand, China, Canada and Indonesia give workers between 19 and 26 days off a year.

After the United Kingdom and Poland, the most-generous nations for time off include the Austria, Greece, Bolivia, Denmark, Finland and France.
 

Country
Statutory minimum holidays (working days)
Ranking by statutory minimum
Public holidays (days)
Ranking by public holidays
Total (working days)
United Kingdom
281
1
8
11
362
Poland
263
2
11
8
37
Austria
25
3
13
5
38
Bolivia
254
3
12
7
37
Denmark
25
3
9
10
34
Finland
255
3
106
9
35
France
257
3
11
8
36
Greece
258
3
12
7
37
Luxembourg
25
3
10
9
35
Sweden
25
3
11
8
36
Malta
24
4
14
4
38
Venezuela
24
4
12
7
36
Hungary
23 (age 31/32)9
5
10
9
33
Brazil
2210
6
11
8
33
Peru
2211
6
12
7
34
Portugal
2212
6
13
5
35
Spain
2213
6
14
4
36
United Arab Emirates
2214
6
9
10
31
Norway
2115
7
10
9
31
Argentina
2016
8
12
7
32
Australia
20
8
1017
9
30
Belgium
20
8
10
9
30
Croatia
20
8
13
5
33
Cyprus
20
8
15
3
35
Czech Republic
20
8
12
7
32
Germany
2018
8
919
10
29
Ireland
20
8
9
10
29
Italy
20
8
11
8
31
Japan
2020
8
15
3
35
Latvia
20
8
12
7
32
Lithuania
2021
8
13
5
33
Netherlands
2022
8
8
11
28
New Zealand
2023
8
11
8
31
Romania
20
8
9
10
29
Russia
2024
8
12
7
32
Serbia
20
8
8
11
28
Slovakia
20
8
15
3
35
Slovenia
20
8
13
5
33
Switzerland
20
8
925
10
29
South Korea
1926
9
15
3
34
Morocco
1827
10
14
4
32
Ukraine
1828
10
9
10
27
Turkey
1729
11
13.5
6
30.5
Malaysia
1630
12
16
2
32
Mexico
16
12
731
12
23
Chile
15
12
14
4
29
Colombia
15
13
18
1
33
Ecuador
1532
13
9
10
24
Lebanon
15
13
16
2
31
South Africa
1533
13
12
7
27
Taiwan
1534
13
13
5
28
Hong Kong
1435
14
1236
7
26
Pakistan
14
14
11
8
25
Singapore
1437
14
11
8
25
Vietnam
14
14
9
10
23
India
1238
15
1639
2
28
Indonesia
12
15
14
4
26
Canada
1040
16
941
10
19
China
1042
16
11
8
21
Thailand
6
17
16
2
22
Philippines
5
18
15
3
20
United States
No mandatory requirement, see explanations below. Typical practice would be 15 days.
19
10
9
25 (including typical vacation time)

 

 

A dandy of a backlash is boiling against Target's Black Thursday plans.

Posted by: Dee DePass Updated: November 16, 2011 - 5:46 PM

 Anthony Hardwick's "Tell Target to Save Thanksgiving" campaign has struck a nerve. 

More than 122,000 people have signed the Target employee's petition at  www.change.org/. His goal? To have supporters tell the retailer to give up its midnight store opening on Thanksgiving night.  Employees want to eat turkey with their families next Thursday and not disrupt the holiday evening just so they can schlep to work to help Target earn an extra buck.

The argument appears to be gaining some traction. Some 60,000 Americans signed Hardwick's petition as of of Monday night. By Tuesday afternoon, the number was 93,363. By dawn Wednesday, it hit 100,053. By dusk it was nearly 123,000.

Target's decision to start Black Friday even earlier than usual wasn't done in a vacuum. Wal-Mart said it will open stores at 10 PM Thanksgiving night.

But the question is, are employees really suffering by being called to work on a holiday normally spent at home? What do you think? National unemployment still stings at 9 percent. Do workers have a right to gripe? Apparently so.

Sears felt so strongly about the subject, its communications staff sent reporters notes Tuesday saying Sears will stay shut on Turkey day so its employees can spend time with their families. As for shoppers? They can head to Sears store at 4 am on Black Friday.

Workers and employers, feel free to join in the debate on Twitter at DePassStrib or email dee.depass@startribune.com.

      

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT