Nurses outraged by plan to strip health professionals of overtime pay - page 7

Some nurses are outraged over a quiet move by the U.S. Department of Labor that could strip registered nurses and other health professionals nationwide from overtime pay. South Florida... Read More

  1. by   KarenAR
    (1) What is wrong with this country? Why do we believe in working ourselves literally to death for the sake of a company's bottom line? Why is it that all other industrialized nations seem to have a better grasp on "quality of life" than we do? Why is it that in America, the land of the free and the home of the brave, we have no FREE time because we are CHAINED to our employers, and we are too FEARFUL to stand up and say how absurd the U.S.'s mentality is when it comes to work-life issues????

    (2) Someone made mention of never hearing of other professions that don't get paid overtime. There are PLENTY of professions that don't get paid overtime. I used to be in one of them (magazine editing) and YES, you DO get overworked WITHOUT the pay. You are expected to stay at work until the job is done regardless of how much you are being paid. And goodness knows nursing is never "done."

    (3) Bush is a moron.
  2. by   geekgolightly
    Originally posted by PsykoRN
    I would recommend that you re-read what the DOL and GWB are trying to do; pick your own source, it does not make one bit of difference to me where you get your information- try the DOL's own website, it's all right there in black and white. The source that I referenced above simply breaks it down so that one is not having to review 39 pages of the DOL's rhetoric plus all the other changes that the Bush adminsitration is trying to push through. If you wish to hang onto the thought that this will "help 1.7 million people" more power to you, but I would caution you on such restrictive thinking.
    Can you deny that these statements are also true?

    * Millions of salaried workers making between $22,101 and $65,000 who now are eligible to receive overtime pay could be reclassified as executives or administrative or professional employees--and would no longer qualify for overtime pay.
    * Relatively low-salary earners who have supervisory responsibilities or management-related responsibilities would be penalized, as would workers with advanced education or specialized training. Some of the jobs affected are police, firefighters, nurses, retail managers, insurance claims adjusters and medical therapists.
    * Employees not covered by the new rules also could be hurt: By reclassifying many of their workers as exempt from overtime pay, employers most likely would assign overtime only to them and eliminate overtime for other workers. Police and firefighters are among those potentially affected.
    * Anyone making $65,000 or more a year likely would lose overtime pay, effectively eliminating many middle-income wage earners' much-needed extra pay.

    According to the U.S. Department of Labor's own estimates, the Bush administration's proposed rule changes could mean between 2.1 million and 3.3 million workers would face unpredictable work schedules because of an increased demand for extra hours for which employers would not have to pay time-and-a-half.


    And what about these bills? What does this say to you?

    H.R. 1119 in the House and S. 317 in the Senate would allow employers to offer workers comp time off in place of the current time-and-a-half overtime pay. H.R. 1119 passed the House Education and the Workforce Committee April 9 with support from Republicans and opposition from Democrats. House Republican leaders initially planned to bring H.R. 1119 to the House floor for a vote around Mother's Day, May 11. But after an outcry from union activists and family and women's groups, the vote was postponed and now has been scheduled for June 5.
  3. by   geekgolightly
    HR1119 states that not only would any employer be free from legal obligation from payment of overtime as long as they gave "comp" time, that they would be able to pay their "comp" time at the employers discretion up to one year after the earning of comp time occurred.

    What does this say to you?
  4. by   fergus51
    That anyone who thinks this would be good for us is on crack.
  5. by   Milehighnurse
    Originally posted by geekgolightly
    HR1119 states that not only would any employer be free from legal obligation from payment of overtime as long as they gave "comp" time, that they would be able to pay their "comp" time at the employers discretion up to one year after the earning of comp time occurred. What does this say to you?
    This says that I am NOT in favor of H.R. 1119 or S 317 nor am I buying into the line that this will "help 1.7 million people" as another poster seems to believe. If S. 317 passes the Senate it will mean a victory OF corporate America FOR corporate America. This whole mess started because the DOL felt that there were too many lawsuits by people seeking damages for unpaid overtime. The Republicans, who are all for corporate America, have suported this bill since it's onset under the guise of "Family Flexibility Act" which is what H.R. 1119 is all about. H.R.1119 is intended to help corporate America rip off middle class America every chance it can. If corporate America gets it's way, the "1.7 million people" who would qualify for O.T. will get screwed as well as it will allow the employer to reclassify people into one of 3 categories, and use the 20% rule (if you do any of the 3 categories type work for 20% of your work day, you are a classified person) if they have too, to get away with not paying O.T. to the folks making minimum wage.
    If one thinks that this "revamping" of the existing DOL rules and regulations is going to help anyone but corporate America, they will be in for a very rude awakening.
  6. by   Milehighnurse
    The other thing that I wonder about is, did the DOL or the GOP think about the economic impact that this will have nationally and eventually globally? Middle class America IS the backbone of this country and if corporate America is allowed to take away our ability to improve economically, there is going to be severe economic fall out. People don't spend money when threatened. Look what happened after 9/11. People were scared and stayed at home, retail suffered and small businesses went under. This was the result of middle class America not spending for roughly a week. How soon the GOP forgets.
  7. by   geekgolightly
    Originally posted by geekgolightly
    Can you deny that these statements are also true?

    * Millions of salaried workers making between $22,101 and $65,000 who now are eligible to receive overtime pay could be reclassified as executives or administrative or professional employees--and would no longer qualify for overtime pay.
    * Relatively low-salary earners who have supervisory responsibilities or management-related responsibilities would be penalized, as would workers with advanced education or specialized training. Some of the jobs affected are police, firefighters, nurses, retail managers, insurance claims adjusters and medical therapists.
    * Employees not covered by the new rules also could be hurt: By reclassifying many of their workers as exempt from overtime pay, employers most likely would assign overtime only to them and eliminate overtime for other workers. Police and firefighters are among those potentially affected.
    * Anyone making $65,000 or more a year likely would lose overtime pay, effectively eliminating many middle-income wage earners' much-needed extra pay.

    According to the U.S. Department of Labor's own estimates, the Bush administration's proposed rule changes could mean between 2.1 million and 3.3 million workers would face unpredictable work schedules because of an increased demand for extra hours for which employers would not have to pay time-and-a-half.


    what about this, PsykoRN? im curious about your take on this.

    I totally agree with you concerning your last post, but when I look at what the DOL's bill which is in senate right now, i see that these things listed above will happen. are you saying that these things won't happen? i believe that the DOL is trying to revamp an old set of regulations with the intent of making overtime more readily availible for those who earn less than 22k a year. but with that tyhat are also doing all of the above. how do you feel about this revamping?
  8. by   Milehighnurse
    Originally posted by geekgolightly
    what about this, PsykoRN? im curious about your take on this.

    I totally agree with you concerning your last post, but when I look at what the DOL's bill which is in senate right now, i see that these things listed above will happen. are you saying that these things won't happen? i believe that the DOL is trying to revamp an old set of regulations with the intent of making overtime more readily availible for those who earn less than 22k a year. but with that tyhat are also doing all of the above. how do you feel about this revamping?
    Quite frankly? I think it's a bunch of garbage. I am all for anyone who works being allowed O.T., don't get me wrong, BUT, with the way these new changes have been proposed, it will be at the expense of the employee regardless of how much you make. Unless one has a contract or is unionized, corporate America will try as hard as it can to screw people out of everything they can get away with. None of these proposed changes are for the benefit of the employee, but they are trying to sell it under the cloak of The Family Flexibility Act. They should name it "At The Whim of the Employer Act" as that is how these changes will affect people, when it benefits the employer. The other thing is the covert way this whole thing has been handled, VERY little coverage-makes ya wonder doesn't it?
    Will it pass in the Senate? Hmmmm, interesting question. IMO, if it does, Bush, and the GOP, will have committed political suicide by angering the back bone of America, the silent majority, good ol middle class America. What totally amazes me is the economic impact that this will have on the USA and eventually the global market. If " we the people" don't have the money to spend, businesses are going to suffer and it won't be just a temporary event like it was after 9/11, it will be sustained. Small businesses will go first, then it will affect larger corporations and eventaully become a global problem.
    Now what really yanks my chain is the fact the the DOL said it was proposing these new changes due to the increased lawsuits regarding non-payment of O.T. My take on this is that if employers were being upfront and fair in the first place, these lawsuits wouldn't have happened.
    Ok, I'll climb off my soapbox for now.
  9. by   Milehighnurse
    More food for thought from the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA):
    http://www.nela.org/docs/HR1119_Summary.pdf
  10. by   geekgolightly
    thank you for your answers. and the link. i love to learn.
  11. by   Catsrule16
    I DON"T WANT COMP TIME.

    I have two jobs, one with the state enforcing health regulations in LTC , the other at a local hospital keeping my clinical skills up to date every other weekend. For the state, anything I work over 37.5 hours a week is given to the state. There is no "comp" time.

    At the hospital, I work every other weekend on an orthopaedic floor with some very hard working nurses and techs. While I don't work enough to get overtime compensation, it would be nice to know if I left the state and went to work full time, I would be financially rewarded for doing the extra hours to get the job done. I want to be paid for what I do. There needs to be a more detailed explaination as to what a white collar worker is. By propsed definition, when I am the Charge Nurse on the floor, I am white collar. Even though I take a full load of up to 8 patients, I am still in Charge. I handle the complaints, the staffing issues, deciding who to call off because of low census, etc.

    To quote Cuba Gooding Jr from Jerry Mcguire.... ""SHOW ME THE MONEY!"
  12. by   Harleyhead
    What does the ANA and other nurse organizations say?
  13. by   VivaLasViejas
    I don't know what ANA says, but IMHO this whole rotten business literally screams "VOTE DEMOCRATIC IN 2004"!!!!!

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