Americans Overwhelmingly Support A Vacation Mandate

By:  Dave Jamieson and Janie Valencia

There is no law guaranteeing U.S. workers paid vacation, but the vast majority of Americans think there should be one, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll.

In the poll conducted just before Labor Day, 78 percent of respondents say large employers should be required to provide workers at least some paid vacation time, a result virtually unchanged from the three-quarters who said the same thing last year. Just over 60 percent say businesses should give their employees two weeks or more of time off.

The U.S. is an outlier among advanced economies when it comes to guaranteeing vacation time for workers. Although most private sector employers do offer at least some paid time off, there is no federal mandate requiring that workers be offered paid vacation as part of their jobs. European countries, by contrast, provide at least 20 vacation days per year for employees.

With vacation time left at the discretion of employers, how much paid time off you receive in the U.S. typically depends on where you fall along the income scale. High-income earners are significantly more likely to enjoy paid vacation than low-income earners. For instance, among the highest 10 percent of wage earners, 92 percent have access to vacation days, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics; among the lowest 10 percent, only 40 percent do.

Read Sen. Sanders' plan to guarantee paid vacation time here.

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