Sunday, 7 June 2015

One for the Scrabble board: furlough...

From the Free Dictionary:
Furlough (fûr′lō)n.
a. leave of absence or vacation, especially one granted to a member of the armed forces.
b. usually temporary layoff from work.
c. temporary leave of absence granted to a prisoner under special circumstances, such as the need to attend the funeral of a family member, or for a special purpose, such as participation in a work program.
2. The papers or documents authorizing a leave: The soldiers had their furloughs in their breast pockets. 
Until Thursday this week, I had never heard this word, neither had Michael, and yet it has been added to our vernacular because the Kansas State government is implementing one, starting Sunday, due to budget shortfalls and the budget not passing before the new fiscal year.

So, this means a "temporary layoff from work" for all non-essential State employees, until the budget is passed. This could be more than 30 days of forced leave-without-pay for these non-essential workers. And this particular furlough is unusual because there are usually 30 days notice before one is implemented.

We are fortunate enough that Michael will not be furloughed - his funding comes from Kansas State. I know we wouldn't be able to stay here if Michael were furloughed for more than two weeks.

My heart goes out to the 24,000+ people waiting for the news on Sunday night, the news that the budget has been passed, so that they can go to work on Monday. It seems unfair to penalise those who can least afford it - the politicians are not taking pay cuts to help with monetary shortfalls. I know this sort of thing would not happen in Australia, at least, it wouldn't be quite so explicit.

Just in: a bill has been passed, although yet to be signed by the Kansas State Governor, preventing the furlough from taking place. At least for the next two weeks.

No comments:

Post a Comment