Preparing For Obamacare: Layoffs, Cutbacks Begin As National Chains Like Red Lobster And Olive Garden Start Cutting Workers’ Hours
Prepping for Obamacare, Chain Cuts Workers’ Hours
Tuesday, 9 Oct 2012
The owner of Olive Garden and Red Lobster restaurants is putting more workers on part-time status in a test aimed at limiting the impact of looming health coverage requirements.
Darden Restaurants [DRI 55.10 0.36 (+0.66%) ] declined to give details but said the test is only in restaurants in four markets across the country. The test entails increasing the number of workers on part-time status, meaning they work less than 30 hours a week. Under the new health care act, companies will be required to provide health care to full-time employees by 2014. That would significantly boost labor costs for businesses.
About 75 percent of Darden’s employees are currently part-timers.
Bob McAdam, who heads government affairs and community relations for Darden, said the company is still learning from the tests, which was first reported by The Orlando Sentinel.