The recent 7.8% unemployment figure left people scratching their heads because it seemed manipulated to reflect a smaller and more politically safe number. Then, we found out that it was low not only because the Bureau of Labor Statistics don’t include those who gave up looking for employment, but also because so many people are now considering their part-time jobs their full-time jobs.
There is a little known Obamacare provision that actually redefines the term “full-time.” Currently, the threshold between part-time and full-time is forty hours per week. The new definition lowers the threshold to thirty hours per week. This is bad news especially for small business owners who were hoping to be able to depend on part-time workers to get around Obamacare’s mandates.
Obamacare will require that businesses with at least fifty full-time employees provide health insurance to all workers or face heavy fines. Many businesses were hoping to be able to cut people’s hours or hire part-time workers so that they could avoid the health insurance mandate and/or the noncompliance penalty. Now, they won’t even be able to do that.
All the part-time workers they have will now be considered full-time if they worked an average of thirty hours per week during a previous three-month employment period. Employers can look back three to twelve months to determine each employee’s average number of hours per week worked. Once an employee is determined to be full-time based on that “look back” period, that employee will maintain that full-time designation for the next six months, regardless of a change in hours during those six months. In other words, according to CNS News:
“[A]n employer calculates the hours an employee works during at least a three-month period, determining if the employee has worked thirty hours or more per week on average. If the employee meets the thirty-hour threshold, they are counted as full-time for at least six months. If the employer has at least fifty such employees, he must provide them with health insurance or pay a fine.”
How is this supposed to help make sure everyone gets free and adequate healthcare coverage? It will only ensure that many more people sign up for Medicaid and food stamps after their employers are forced to shut down. The Democrats’ solution to a failing economy is letting tax cuts expire, raising taxes and forcing compliance to more bureaucratic and costly regulations. Those measures only serve to hasten a complete economic collapse.