Stat holidays are costly to employers and the provincial economy

The announcement of Family Day, another statutory holiday in BC, has predictably met with widespread approval, especially by employees. Who wouldn’t want another day off with full pay?

The announcement of Family Day, another statutory holiday in BC, has predictably met with widespread approval, especially by employees. Who wouldn’t want another day off with full pay?

Let’s have at least one each month!

And yet, there is another perspective. There is a major downside to adding another day to the nine current paid holidays, which do not include Easter Sunday, Easter Monday or Boxing Day which many employers also treat as if they also were statutory paid holidays.

The cost on employers is high. A firm having 30 employees averaging $30 an hour for an eight-hour day suddenly, with the premier’s smiling announcement, becomes responsible for paying out $7,200 for precisely nothing in return. And the owner wasn’t even consulted! Beyond that, the owner also loses production and service for clientele.

What about public employees? Take the case of the Fraser Health Authority. It has 26,000 staff members, not counting the 2,500 physicians. The FHA cannot close its hospitals and care homes for a day. It must continue with its operation, but thanks to this new regulation, it must now pay its hourly employees time and a half for working on a statutory holiday.

This scenario takes in all of B.C.’s health care workers and all other civil servants and Crown agency employees, such as ferry workers, police officers, firefighters and more. This additional holiday turns out to cost millions.

There are many other additional costs. What about restaurants, hotels, gas stations, bus drivers, farm workers, and media personnel?

The provincial economy produces less. And when employers close their firms for a day because they can’t afford to pay time and a half, the government gets less tax revenue.

There may be justification for creating a paid Family Day. Some other provinces have done so, but we should at least be aware of the costs to employers, to taxpayers, and to the provincial economy.

John H. Redekop

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Motorists were ‘driving like their own Indy 500’ before fatal Abbotsford crash, court hears

Family member declares defence request for 90-day jail sentence a ‘joke’

Abbotsford Panthers win EVAA title

Abby senior boys defeat Yale Lions 90-79 on Sunday to capture banner

Abbotsford athletes earn medals at BC Winter Games

Gymnasts, judo competitors big local winners at Fort St. John event

Surge in Fraser Health home-care complaints concerns seniors advocate

Number of people complaining about home care has risen substantially over the last four years

Mission MLA Simon Gibson appointed Assistant Deputy Speaker

Gibson will now preside over daily sessions of the House, when the Deputy Speaker or Speaker is away

VIDEO: Illicit drug overdoses killed 981 in B.C. in 2019, down 38%

Chief coroner says figures were down about a third in the province’s fourth year of the opioid crisis

UPDATE: Protesters dismantle blockade on Maple Ridge tracks

West Coast Express train service is expected to run again Tuesday morning

VIDEO: B.C.’s seventh coronavirus patient at home in Fraser Health region

Canada in ‘containment’ as COVID-19 spreads in other countries

B.C. takes over another Retirement Concepts senior care home

Summerland facility latest to have administrator appointed

Man pleads guilty to stabbing woman, off-duty cop outside North Delta elementary school

The suspect, whose name is under a publication ban, faced 10 charges in relation to this incident

RCMP pull office from Wet’suwet’en territory, but hereditary chiefs still want patrols to end

Chief says temporary closure of field office not enough as Coastal GasLink pipeline dispute drags on

Prescription opioids getting B.C. addicts off ‘poisoned’ street drugs

Minister Judy Darcy says Abbotsford pilot project working

Royals, Elvis, Captain Cook: Hundreds of wax figures find new life in B.C. man’s home

Former director of Victoria’s Royal London Wax Museum still hopes to revive wax figure tourism

Teck CEO says Frontier withdrawal a result of tensions over climate, reconciliation

Don Lindsay speaks at mining conference, a day after announcing suspension of oilsands project

Most Read