Shamu Latest To Be Hit by Health Law’s Part-Timing of America

September 10, 2013

SeaWorld to Cut Part Time Hours for Up to 18,000 Workers – “‘There is No Other Reason to Change Your Cap from 32 hours to 28 other than’ the Affordable Care Act”

You can now add SeaWorld to the growing list of what the Chicago Tribune recently characterized as “the part-timing of America” as the health law fuels the nation’s transition away from full-time employment. SeaWorld announced its intentions to reduce part-time hours for up to 18,000 part-time employees, further reinforcing the Tribune’s forecast that the health care law “will give companies – and, surprisingly, their workers – a big incentive to embrace more part-time employment.” Sadly, with the addition of SeaWorld, the “part-timing” list continues to grow.

September 9, 2013

SeaWorld to cut hours for part-time workers

SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. is reducing hours for thousands of part-time workers, a move that would allow the Orlando-based theme-park owner to avoid offering those employees medical insurance under the federal government's health-care overhaul.

SeaWorld confirmed the move Monday in a brief written statement to the Orlando Sentinel. The company operates 11 theme parks across the United States and has about 22,000 employees — nearly 18,000 of whom are part-time or seasonal workers. It has more than 4,000 part-time and seasonal workers in Central Florida.

Under a new corporate policy, SeaWorld will schedule part-time workers for no more than 28 hours a week, down from a previous limit of 32 hours a week. The new cap is expected to go into effect by November.

With the reduced hours, those employees would not be classified as full-time workers under the Affordable Care Act, the health-care overhaul championed by President Barack Obama and signed into law in 2010. …

Industry experts said SeaWorld's move appears to be aimed at sidestepping the health-insurance law, which is commonly referred to as Obamacare. Under the new law, large businesses that do not offer insurance to full-time workers will have to pay fines of as much as $3,000 per employee.

"There is no other reason to change your cap from 32 hours to 28 other than" the Affordable Care Act, said Duncan Dickson, a former human-resources executive at Walt Disney World who is now an associate professor in the University of Central Florida's Rosen College of Hospitality Management. …

Read the entire story online here.