Government Mandates

Americans know that workers—particularly women—need to be able to balance work and family life.  Flexibility is a good thing.

Yet laws mandating a certain set of benefits for workers aren’t providing flexibility.  In fact, they are doing the opposite.

Proponents of government mandates for paid maternity or sick leave, for example, ignore the costs associated with those benefits and the tradeoffs that employers and workers face when considering compensation packages.

Of course, we all recognize that sometimes employees need time away from the job.  That’s why the Department of Labor data shows that the overwhelming majority of businesses offer leave time, and most offer paid leave.  

However, there is a reason that not all businesses offer these benefits.  Leave benefits come with real costs for employers.  There is the cost of administering the leave program and covering for the absent worker.  The extra costs associated with benefits affect how much workers receive as take-home play.  And in fact, the Department of Labor estimates that on average less than 70 percent of total cost of compensation goes toward take-home pay.  The other 30 percent goes to taxes (such as Social Security’s payroll taxes and unemployment insurance) and benefits.  Paid leave benefits account for an average of 7 percent of overall compensation. 

That is something for workers to consider.  Of course, everyone likes to have paid vacation time.  But would you trade in your paid leave benefits in exchange for a raise of 7 percent?  

People will vary on their answer to that question.  Yet I bet we can all agree that it’s a legitimate question to ask, and that people should be free to come down on either side of it.  

Similarly, the outdated Fair Labor and Standards Act creates arbitrary distinctions about how different classes of workers should be compensated, particularly when it comes to over-time.  Such government attempts to micromanage our dynamic work world is a barrier to flexibility and a needless drag on business and job creation.


ARTICLES:

Test Your Knowledge: A Guide to the Paycheck Fairness Act
April 8 2014
Victoria Coley



Paycheck Fairness Fraud
April 8 2014
Carrie L. Lukas
USA Today



Paycheck Fairness Fraud
April 8 2014
Carrie L. Lukas
USA Today



Paycheck Fairness Act: Not Good for Paychecks or Fairness
April 7 2014
Hadley Heath
Red Alert Politics



The Fictitious Holiday Based on a Faux Statistic
April 7 2014
Sabrina Schaeffer
Ricochet



Test Your Knowledge: A Guide to the Wage Gap
April 7 2014
Victoria Coley



Paycheck Fairness Act: Not Good for Paychecks or Fairness
April 7 2014
Hadley Heath
Red Alert Politics



The Fictitious Holiday Based on a Faux Statistic
April 7 2014
Sabrina Schaeffer
Ricochet



The President's Executive Orders on Equal Pay Won't Help Women
April 7 2014
Carrie L. Lukas
National Review



'Bossy' Ban: The Main Problem With Feminism Today
March 21 2014
Karin Agness
Huffington Post: Women



CPAC: Why Conservatism is Right for Women
March 10 2014
Sabrina Schaeffer



When It Comes To Addressing Women In The SOTU, Obama Will Double-Down On Government-Knows-Best
January 28 2014
Sabrina Schaeffer
Forbes



Marriage and Mobility
January 24 2014
Rachel DiCarlo Currie



More Daycare, Less Regulation
January 22 2014
Abby Schachter



Five Reasons Not to Take The Shriver Report Seriously—and One Reason to Take It Very, Very Seriously
January 21 2014
Charlotte Hays
The Federalist



The Shriver Report: Right on the problem of poverty, but wrong on solutions
January 17 2014
Hadley Heath
Red Alert Politics



#IAmWoman: REAL Solutions to Help "Women on the Brink."
January 16 2014
Victoria Coley



Shriver Report Is the New ‘War on Women’ Manifesto
January 15 2014
Carrie L. Lukas
National Review Online



The Shriver Report: Too Often Over-Bearing Government Is Women's Worst Enemy
January 14 2014
Sabrina Schaeffer
Forbes



IWF Responds to The Shriver Report
January 14 2014



Four Significant Moments for Women in 2013
December 31 2013
Sabrina Schaeffer
National Review Online



Proposed Paid Leave Program Limits Freedom To Negotiate
December 13 2013
Hadley Heath
Doublethink Magazine



Beyond the Glass Ceiling
December 12 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
National Review Online



Business Must Stop Coddling Women In The Workplace
December 4 2013
Sabrina Schaeffer
Forbes



Women Deserve to Decide Whether They Want More Pay or More Flexibility
November 4 2013
Carrie L. Lukas



EVENT: Mad Women Debate: The Battle of the Sexes
September 9 2013
Victoria Coley



Hanna Rosin Gets It Right . . . Sort of
September 3 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
National Review Online



Gallup: Vast Majority of Women Don't See Gender Bias Holding Them Back
August 19 2013
Charlotte Hays



The Gender Delusion
August 15 2013
Sabrina Schaeffer
ricochet



Nancy Pelosi And Democrats' 'New' Agenda For Women Shows Endless Faith In Big Government
August 5 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
Forbes



Commercialization of 'Lean In' has turned message on its head
July 29 2013
Sabrina Schaeffer
The Hill



Pelosi Still Pigeon-Holes Women
July 23 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
National Review Online



The Next General in the War on Men’s Pay
July 15 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
Foxnews.com



Traditional Issues, New Strategies
July 8 2013
The American Spectator Claire Healey
The American Spectator



DOL on a Mission to Crush Entrepreneurship
June 26 2013
Carrie L. Lukas



Not-So-Swift Attack on Swiffer
June 6 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
National Review



Good Advice for Twenty-Somethings: Life Is Happening Now
May 31 2013
Karin Agness
Huffington Post



The Rise in (Reluctant) Breadwinner Moms
May 29 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
National Review



Government Needs to Lean Out to Help Working Moms
May 14 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
Huffington Post



The Effects of Media's Focus on Women Candidates' Appearance Aren't Pretty
April 12 2013
Karin Agness
Huffington Post



More on Husbandgate at Princeton
April 3 2013
Charlotte Hays



It Turns Out that Flexibility Requires, Well, Flexibility
April 1 2013
Carrie L. Lukas
Mercury One | Prosum



Reexamining Women’s Success at the Workplace
March 26 2013
Karin Agness
BlogHer.com



Hypocrisy Alert: More on the White House's Gender Pay Gap
March 20 2013
Charlotte Hays



Sommers on Sandberg
March 19 2013
Charlotte Hays



More on the Sandberg Conversation...
March 13 2013
Charlotte Hays



The Queen Bee: A Female Boss Who Stings
March 5 2013
Charlotte Hays



The Unsung Problems Within The Family And Medical Leave Act
February 20 2013
Sabrina Schaeffer
Forbes



Okay--I Give Up: What IS Hillary Clinton's Legacy?
February 5 2013
Charlotte Hays



GLAMOUR Editor Meredith Tunits talks with IWF Executive Director
January 31 2013
GLAMOUR