(360) 943-9198 info@retailassociation.org

Seattle scheduling study has problems

By Jan Teague, President/CEO


We recently told you about a study of retail impacts from Seattle labor practices on scheduling.  Don’t participate in the study.  I repeat, don’t participate in the study. 

Here is why.  It’s being done by advocates in support of scheduling! (Check out the writings of Professor Susan Lambert whose research assistant is doing the work).

Why would the city hire them?  It’s simple, the city is going through the government process.  In government, the process is what matters, not interest in the results.  We always joke about the money government spends on studies and then shelves them.  This will be the same, except for one thing.  Because it is being done by an advocate for scheduling, a positive message on scheduling is the only outcome they will promote.  Forget the “outliers” in the study that have a unique problem.  That’s what they will say about your concern.  They will say they have to do what is good for everyone else.

Could Seattle get it right with a good study?  Only if it was backed by hundreds of retailers going to city hall and pounding on the doors of the city council chamber.  That becomes the challenge for business, finding the time to do such a thing and leave work.

The city did send an email back to those groups who signed a letter saying their associations would not encourage their members to participate. Basically the city said that if you snooze, you lose.  It hasn’t changed anyone’s mind.  The letter still stands.  Do not participate if you are contacted.  We will let you know when and if the right study is done to take an objective look at our problems with the scheduling law.


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