Originally published March 1 2014
Obamacare causing Target to drop coverage for part-time employees
by J. D. Heyes
(NaturalNews) We have warned for more than a year that the Affordable Care Act will prove to be one of the most harmful, job-killing, economy-destroying pieces of legislation ever, and with each passing week we are consistently proven correct.
One of the boldest - and easiest - predictions we made regarding the ill effects of Obamacare was that the law's employer mandate would cause a net reduction in employment. The employer mandate, you may recall, is a provision in the law that requires all employers with more than 50 full-time employees to provide them with health insurance coverage.
Well, that provision alone, we knew, would cost employers lots of money - costs that would either a) be passed onto customers in the form of higher prices (which is happening); or b) be reduced by reducing the number of full-time employees (which has also been happening, hence the "part-time economy" reference that some fiscal experts have begun to utilize to describe today's economic conditions).
That said, sometimes it is no fun being right.
If you like your coverage, we're sorry, but you can't keep it
The latest Obamacare employment casualties are part-time workers at big-box retailer Target. According to a recent report in The Hill, the company has decided that, in order to cut costs, it will be dropping health coverage for its part-time employees - despite President Obama's unconstitutional one-year delay of the employer mandate:
In a blog post on the company's website, Jodee Kozlak, the executive vice president of human resources, framed it as a positive development for part-time employees of the company.
"The Health Insurance Marketplaces provides new options for healthcare coverage that we believe our part-time members may prefer," she wrote. "In fact, by offering them insurance, we could actually disqualify many of them from being eligible for newly available subsidies that could reduce their overall health insurance expense."
Uh, well - perhaps not. But all of this was foreseeable as well. As to Obamacare creating part-time jobs:
-- In July I wrote that Obamacare would force companies to reduce full-time employee hours to part-time, in order to avoid having to pay (much more) for their insurance [http://www.naturalnews.com]:
At a time when unemployment remains unacceptably high (7.6 percent in June, up from lows of 4-5 percent in 2004-2006), Obamacare is putting even more downward pressure on hiring, leaving American workers stuck in cycles of unemployment or underemployment.
-- In a separate July report, I noted that, "according to a just-published survey, a staggering 74 percent of small businesses - nearly three-quarters - say they will have to cut hours and jobs in order to stay afloat, thanks to the employer mandate in Obamacare."
Other health industry analysts also predicted that the employee mandate would typically destroy the current employee-insurance concept, because in order to save money, companies dump their workers onto the Obamacare exchanges, just like Target is doing.
As reported by The Daily Caller in September of last year:
Home Depot is transferring roughly 20,000 part-time workers to the taxpayer-funded Obamacare exchanges, marking another step in the nationwide rollout of President Barack Obama's most prized accomplishment.
"Unfortunately, the ACA [Affordable Care Act] precludes us from offering the limited liability medical plan we've been offering the part-time associates," said Stephen Holmes, the company's director of corporate communications.
The coming disaster for taxpayers
So far, only a limited number of companies have made the move to dump their employees onto Obamacare exchanges, but as the deadline for the employer mandate period draws near later this year, more companies are bound to follow suit.
And that will be a disaster for taxpayers.
The authors of the law based part of its success on the fact that costs could be kept lower by forcing employers to shoulder the burden for covering employees. But what the authors didn't anticipate was that the costs to provide said coverage are simply too much to bear for many companies, necessitating their need to dump as many employees as possible into the exchanges.
And doing so will force a dramatic increase in the cost to the government (read: taxpayers) to cover additional millions whose coverage costs were supposed to be borne by employers.
The Obamacare disaster continues to unfold by the week. There is no way things get better before they get much, much worse.
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