Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Three in Ten Organizations Will Close for Business on Martin Luther King Day

/PRNewswire/ -- In observance of Martin Luther King Day, three in ten employers (30 percent) will give all or most workers a paid holiday on Monday, January 17, according to BNA's most recent survey of holiday practices.

This is only a marginal change from figures reported by employers for 2010 (28 percent), and is in line with figures reported for 2009 (31 percent), 2008 (33 percent) and 2007 (31 percent). While there has been no significant change over the past five years in the proportion of organizations giving Martin Luther King Day as a paid holiday, recent levels of paid leave on Martin Luther King Day are a significant increase over what was observed in the first 11 years of this holiday. Only 14 percent of surveyed employers made Martin Luther King Day a paid holiday in its inaugural year of 1986 and figures stayed in the teens for six years until a spike in 1993 (24 percent). Figures remained in the low to mid-20 percent range before climbing to 30 percent for the first time in 2003.

Consistent with past years, nonbusiness employers are much more likely to make Martin Luther King Day a paid holiday than are nonmanufacturing or manufacturing establishments. More than one-half of nonbusiness organizations (56 percent) will make January 17 a paid holiday, compared with 21 percent of nonmanufacturing firms and 10 percent of manufacturers.

Organizations with a union presence are somewhat more likely than those without one to designate Martin Luther King Day as a paid holiday (36 percent of unionized establishments compared with 28 percent of nonunion organizations). There is no significant difference in paid time off for Martin Luther King Day between larger organizations with 1,000 or more employees and their smaller counterparts (32 percent versus 29 percent).

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