It might look like a long post, but it's pivotal in making an ObamaCare opponent look downright stupid, all the while educating them. Wow, what a deal. First things first:
The big myth; employers are cutting hours.
Cutting employees' hours to evade the requirements of the Affordable Care Act, which some call Obamacare, is "not a viable option," Tracy says. "The people in this business are the single most important resource I've got."
-- Disneyland said it recently offered full-time status to 1,000 part-time employees who had worked more than 1,500 hours in the past year -- the number that would make them eligible for medical benefits under the health reform law.
-- Trader Joe's is cutting health benefits for part-timers and sending them, along with $500, to the Obamacare exchanges.
-- UPS is eliminating insurance for employees' spouses who have other options.
-- Walgreen, the giant pharmacy retailer, will give full-time workers a fixed sum to purchase coverage from a smorgasbord of options on a private insurance exchange.
That's just the tip of the iceberg. Many local companies -- seeing orders rise as the economy improves -- say they won't cut workers or hours, but instead plan to reduce health benefits in existing coverage (that exceeds ObamaCare coverage). Most companies that offer employee insurance already have plans with benefit levels that exceed the minimum Obamacare requirements, and many of them are "reducing benefits like crazy" to manage their additional costs.
Cutting hours bad:
Some employers … decided recently to downgrade an undisclosed number of full-time staff members to just 29.5 hours. But the strategy can backfire … one car wash he knew of had decided to limit employees' hours to 25 a week. But it ended up having to hire more people, because its existing workers had to take second jobs and no longer had the flexibility to take shifts that needed filling.
Other companies are going in the opposite direction … they are simply avoiding the hassle by upgrading them to full time.
The employer delay: It’s a minor time out for companies to adjust (attention Jon Stewart).
Nationwide, more than 94 percent of employers with at least 50 employees provide medical insurance, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
ObamaCare a better Deal, Employees may move away from employer coverage:
Another approach is the one followed by Trader Joe's: dropping coverage for part-timers and giving them some cash to help pay for health plans sold through the public insurance exchanges. A Trader Joe's executive suggested that it was acting in the interest of employees who do not make a lot of money and could obtain federal tax credits via the exchange to help pay for coverage. "The law provides those people a pretty good deal for insurance ... a deal that can't be matched by us -- or any company" … Indeed, many observers predict that the exchanges could prove to be better for lower-income working people than coverage offered by their employers.
"If exchanges are successful, it may turn out that employees will want to be in them. They may say, 'Gee, look at those costs. They are much cheaper than what I am getting,'" said Karen Marlo, vice president of the National Business Group on Health, which represents large U.S.employers in the health care arena. "I think in a few years out, things may evolve to a situation where employees are asking their employers to let them go there."