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Will You Boycott Businesses That Avoid Paying Employee Health Insurance?

In response to Obamacare, some franchise owners are planning to cut employee hours to avoid providing health care.

Businesses across the country are attempting to formulate a response to the Affordable Health Care Act, with some business owners and restaurant franchisees saying they will be cutting hours.

One of the latest cases is a Wendy's franchisee in Nebraska announcing it would cut employees' hoursaffecting roughly 100 employees — to avoid providing health care. Wendy's Corporate, which directly operates stores in Massachusetts, has not discounted cutting employee hours even as they distance themselves from the statement out of Nebraska.

"We are still reviewing our approach to the Affordable Care Act, when the employer mandate goes into effect in 2014," Wendy's Corporate Media Contact Bob Bertini told Patch this week. "Our franchisees are independent business people, and they make the decisions regarding benefits for their restaurant teams."

There are some signs that a business planning to cut hours to avoid providing health care is a turn off to customers.

What do you think? Would you boycott a company that cuts employee hours to avoid providing health care? Tell us in the comments.

Neil Herzig January 12, 2013 at 06:59 PM
Well said Joesarp!
Ron king January 12, 2013 at 07:27 PM
Yes, raise prices to reflect actual costs of doing business, or take a cut in profit, is what I suggest the the 1%.
Jan Galkowski January 12, 2013 at 07:57 PM
Businesses which are so marginal in their profitability that they "will close" if they pay for health care should probably close up anyway. They won't survive the next increase in energy prices, or building insurance, or increase in inflation anyway. To the degree this does not happen, whining about paying employees for health care is equivalent to a Chicken Little move.
Bob Levine January 12, 2013 at 09:00 PM
Obama screwed us with this government grab and now the middle class is paying for it while businesses try to remain competitve. No, actually it makes me want to give them more business for standing up to the Dem Lib Machine that is grabbing from the middle class constantly and then blatently lying about it.
Neil Licht January 12, 2013 at 09:02 PM
Before deciding, have you any idea of what covering employees for health care costs???? Its astounding. Have you ever run a business and tried to make a profit at it? If you don't know the answer to that then shut up because you don't know how badly this has effected any business. The problem was not health care coverage it was and still is runaway healthcare bills and costs at the care provider level and the drug maker level. Thats the issues we did not address and its what will continue to kill us re insurance rates and costs. How about we do something about the $1000 aspirin in a hospital or the $3000 per shot cancer treatment. As usual, we go and hurt the small businesses and blame business as the culprit.
Alice Mask January 12, 2013 at 09:14 PM
Boycotting a business isn't going to change anything. Blame falls on the politicians that voted for something that they didn't read. Blame goes to those that voted Obama to a second term without fully understanding what that meant. As a former small business owner, there's no way I could have paid my employees health insurance. It's not about the want, it's about the ability to do so.
Jennifer January 12, 2013 at 09:19 PM
Then it is better to run the employer out of business so no one has a job? We are all in agreement that taking care of employees is important! But it also has to be feasible for the business to support or everyone is out of a job.
Jennifer January 12, 2013 at 09:22 PM
thank you!
Mary Gonzales January 12, 2013 at 09:23 PM
Shouldn't the business in Massachusetts already figured this out? Massachusetts has required health care for several years now.
Paul Bishop January 12, 2013 at 09:53 PM
Companies with under 50 employees are exempt from the employer mandate. You really ought to read the law and not Faux News' cartoon version..
Irene Del Bono January 12, 2013 at 11:28 PM
The requirements for employers were in place long before Obama, and small businesses were always exempt. Obamacare simply offers options for employees of small businesses. How do I determine which businesses cheat? Let's see. The ones the AG and Labor Department go after for keeping employee's tips, or not paying them overtime, or making them work BEFORE and AFTER clocking in, or the businesses that pollute or illegally dump to increase their profits and leave the mess for the neighbors to contend with and the taxpayers to pay for. Big or small, the same standard applies - plenty of big businesses are ethical and law abiding, and see their relationship with employees as a two way street. I have sympathy for small businesses because of the labrynth of things they have to know, and I know it is hard for them to "do it all." Most local small businesses are exempt from providing health care or benefits. But I know many who do provide benefits anyway - they don't need a law to do the right thing. Oh - and other ways to know who cheats? How about the ones who deduct health insurance from wages, but don't buy the health insurance - and then won't pay the medical bills when employees end up in the hospital and only give back the money they deducted for the insurance? Or the restaurants who have you clock out during slow times but you have to hang around the mall in case they call you back, to save money? I could go on and on and on....
Irene Del Bono January 12, 2013 at 11:40 PM
Have you ever looked at what your health care providers bill, and what the insurance companies actually pay? I don't know how a doctor survives, having to pay a receptionist, nurse, billing person or company, payroll person or company, and then getting $45 or less for an office visit. You are right, Neil, the pharmaceutical companies and someone (insurance companies) seem to be making plenty of profits on the backs of all businesses and patients who the insurance companies seem intent on denying coverage for. Fix those problems, and costs will come down. Unfortunately, the private sector will not stand for it, so we will continue to see Americans paying far more than people in other countries pay for the same (often better) care.
Bob Levine January 12, 2013 at 11:46 PM
Read the 2,000+ pages, really Paul? The Democratic dunces in Congress didnt have the time to read it. Even Pelosi said we had to pass it before we could see what was I. It. BTW Fox is the only reliable source of bipartisan news, have you checked the Nielsen ratings for cable news? I don't think CNN is even in the top 10 with Fox #1 for years. How do you explain that?
Barry January 12, 2013 at 11:53 PM
No company, small or very large, owned by wealthy people or not, should reduce their profits to pay for healthcare for employees beyond what is legally required of them. If management believes they can succeed in the marketplace with fewer employees then that decision should be up to them. Fortunately the US is driven by a capitalistic engine.
Irene Del Bono January 12, 2013 at 11:58 PM
Fox the only reliable source? Really?? Nearly every time I fact check something from Fox, I find that their "spin" has so twisted the facts (if there is even a factual basis) that they lose their credibility. Ratings are about sensationalism, fear mongering, character assasinations, which are so much more interesting than boring factual reporting. "Just the facts" can make for awfully dull news - so put a spin on it, dress it up and make it sensational, and people are drawn to it. There is a big difference between facts and infotainment news. I watch Fox because it's entertaining - but definitely not for a factual, reasoned analysis of anything. Their election night was fun - I have to say.
Mojo January 13, 2013 at 01:17 AM
I agree to a point, but a good percentage of that $1000 aspirin and chemo cost is also do to people with insurance coverage having to pick up the cost for those that do not or are on public assistance a.k.a MassHealth. I don't think that most people realize that MassHealth pays rehab facilities less than $300 dollars a day to care for a person that is totally dependent for all levels a care. Oh! They don't pay for rehab either but the facility is expected to provide it.
JOHN KAUFMAN January 13, 2013 at 12:37 PM
I would love to see your books...I don't believe you
Danielle Lizotte January 13, 2013 at 12:55 PM
Right, but business are sharing much less of their payroll with their workers these days. And guess who has to help big corporations support their "lucky to have a job" minimum wage workers? We the taxpayers do. I have a hard time crying for Wendy's or Olive Garden or Walmart when this stuff is going on. http://www.goodjobsfirst.org/corporate-subsidy-watch/hidden-taxpayer-costs
Danielle Lizotte January 13, 2013 at 01:26 PM
A capitalistic engine that gets free fuel from the government safety net for its workers, and then whines when being ordered to actually pay for it. I agree with many of these comments that health care costs are out of control. I don't believe ether party had the temerity to take on the insurance industry though.
Irene Del Bono January 13, 2013 at 01:26 PM
This statement says a company should not be able to provide anything for its employees not required under the law if it will reduce profits? This kind of thinking is what results in the need for laws to protect employees - the very laws many people on this list are complaining about! Profits are what is left over after the cost of doing business - and for some employers, attracting and retaining good employees by providing benefits is part of those costs. No one has commented on the outrageous salaries, perks, and platinum parachutes the heads of companies give themselves - which all come out of profits, and are paid for on the backs of employees and American taxpayers. The link provided by Danielle shows the thousands upon thousands of employees of the Walmarts, Stop and Shops, Dunkin Donuts and McDonalds whose medical costs the taxpayers of MA are paying for - so that the companies can increase their profits to provide billions in benefits to a few people at the top of the corporate ladder. By your logic, the corporate management should not be given all those benefits, perks, stock options and platinum parachutes because the law does not require it. So...does your logic extend to corporate management, who take a huge chunk out of profits to pay for their perks?
milfordman January 13, 2013 at 03:30 PM
No, I won't. Businesses should be free to offer or not offer a particular benefit based on whatever they think is in the best interests of the business. The cost of providing Obama mandated insurance is too high for many small margin low cost businesses like fast food restaurants. Higher costs leads to higher prices and lower margins both of which impair the long term financial viability of the enterprise. The same scolds who are eager to force compliance of this onerous law would be the first to complain, and then boycott, these same businesses for the higher prices that would inevitably result. Government mandates that add to the cost of employment lead to less employment. Econ 101.
Barry January 13, 2013 at 05:16 PM
Actually I hear whining from people about business owners or managers exercising their right to manage expenses - and profits - the way they want to (and can continue to do so as long as what they are doing is legal). Consumers have a right not to do business with any company. Business owners and managers have an equal right to hire as few or fire as many employees as they want. One perk of our market-based capitalistic engine country is that no-one is or should be guaranteed life-time job security.
Jim January 13, 2013 at 05:19 PM
It's amazing to see how utterly uninformed many of the posters on this site are on the health care law. Anyone who followed the process with any critical thinking skills applied whatsoever, knows that the law known as "Obamacare" is based on Republican ideas at it's core. The individual mandate at the center of the law was dreamed up in conservative think tanks in the 90's, and championed by guys like Newt Gingrich and Bob Dole. That's why when Romney passed it in Mass, no one cried "tyranny"!! The fact is, when Obamacare was passed, the Repubs got exactly what they wanted...a windfall for the insurance companies. What's even funnier, is that all the complaints about the law by these posters would actually be solved by a truly liberal plan...a single payer. Imagine that... business would shoulder zero healthcare burden. But you wont hear that angle on the Hannity show, as truth is not Fox's strong suit.
SAT January 13, 2013 at 11:47 PM
Well said
milfordman January 14, 2013 at 11:58 AM
Heh. Sorry but lots and lots of people complained when the Mass Health bill passed. They still do. Thanks to the implementation of that law, we have the highest health insurance premiums in the country. Now, thanks to Obama (and Jim above, who seems keen on deflecting blame for Obamacare onto the GOP -- go figure) the rest of the country is beginning to feel our pain.
Irene Del Bono January 14, 2013 at 02:02 PM
What make you think we have the highest health insurance premiums in the country? Do you have some facts to back that up - adjusted for MA higher costs of living? Re-read the article - the employer mandate doesn't go into effect until 2014. So employers cutting employees now claiming it is because of Obamacare are flat out lying. It's just like the coal companies, who are claiming they are closing their mines because of regulations, when it is clear that the fracking and cheap gas prices have severely reduced the demand for coal. And from all the deaths and mine accidents caused by failure to implement required safety precautions and drilling in a manner prohibited by regulation, they ignore regulations anyway. Same with big oil, whose CEOs only concern is "getting back to their lives" - i.e., they could care less about the loss of lives or damage their cheating caused. And they are still lying, paying for ads that say everything is back to the way it was, when nothing is further from the truth. As for Obamacare having been proposed by the GOP first (designed to add profits to line the pockets of insurance companies), not only is it true, but it was speculated to be one of Romney's biggest stumbling blocks, distancing himself from Obamacare while bragging about implementing Romneycare, a GOP-based idea. Too many people conveniently forget facts that conflict with what they choose to believe, as in "my mind is made up - don't confuse me with the facts."
Irene Del Bono January 14, 2013 at 02:14 PM
You are clearly wrong - the article says Wendy's Corporate has not discounted cutting employee hours. Now is the perfect time to send a message that if they cut hours to avoid paying benefits some people will choose not to go there (remember - the law does not go into effect until 2014, so anyone claiming their cuts now are due to having to provide health care are liars).
milfordman January 14, 2013 at 06:35 PM
http://www.commonwealthfund.org/~/media/Files/News/News%20Releases/2012/Dec/1648_Schoen_state_trends_premiums_deductibles_2003_2011_1210_EMBARGO.pdf Here's one study. I have read countless other studies and articles that support the fact that Mass has the highest insurance premiums. Of course, that honor may soon be lost thanks to Obamacare. And despite your protestations to the contrary large junks of ObamaCare have already been implemented -- remember those thousands of waivers from the law that Obama granted his friends last year?--including taxes and employer requirements.
Irene Del Bono January 14, 2013 at 07:29 PM
milfordman, I generally go to a site like governing.com for national data comparing states (interestingly, this month highlights Massachusetts and what good shape it is in). Were you aware that Obamacare provides a disincentive for insurance companies to deny coverage, and so one way or another, either through reduced rates, or the rebates mandated by Obamacare, they have to fork over and can't pad their pockets with money from denying customers medical care - to the tune of $167 million in Texas. To my mind, that is a good thing. Am trying to access the report you referenced (thank you! I am always interested in good sources).
Henry Massingale September 26, 2013 at 04:12 AM
We will support anyone who boycotts this Health Care Bill. Boycott The Health Care Bill, I will never pay the first penny into this Obama Care, for the rest of my life, I will Boycott it. As soon as the American People just say no, and have a Old Fashion American Boycott, then only then will these Government Officials understand.... I have been searching for information, that Government Officials, invested into the Health Care Bill. In a direct search....under Healthcare Bill.......no information was there, but under a search for Government Officials Investments into Pharmaceuticals, google presented this... Now this does not show at a 100% in-put of information...so this data can not show a direct link to all as of yet.......only some.... 1. John Kerry (D-MA) Avg. Net Worth of Household in 2006: $267,789,805 Spouse's Name and Title: 2. Herbert H. Kohl (D-WI) Avg. Net Worth of Household in 2006: $171,423,011 3. Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA) Avg. Net Worth of Household in 2006: $102,822,519 4. John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV (D-WV) Avg. Net Worth of Household in 2006: $91,713,012 5. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) Avg. Net Worth of Household in 2006: $79,555,657 10. Andrew L. (Lamar) Alexander, Jr. (R-TN) Avg. Net Worth of Household in 2006: $27,800,155 67. Barack H. Obama (D-IL) Avg. Net Worth of Household in 2006: $799,006 read more:http://insidertrading.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=001580 President Barack Obama | The White House- You Lied, You know I have posted many things to day, and it all stands on one thing, President Obama, you lied, our Government Lied, and for this, most of our Officials in Government will be voted out. The day that three Military Solders died in the Poppy Fields, protecting heroin, our country died with them. Our faith in our own Government died with these solders. Their names are lost in the history,we will never know who they were, but the memory of them will undo this Administration, over this Afghan War. President Obama, you lied and so did President Bush, this Health Care Bill died along with our American Vets....because of heroin..... As long as Pharmaceutical Heroin is paid for within I will boycott...

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