Saks joins retailers who cut health insurance for part-timers (thanks, Obama!)
Add Lord & Taylor and Saks Fifth Avenue to the list of retailers ending health insurance for part-timers in response to new Obamacare regulations.
The chains decided to no longer offer coverage to associates who average less than 30 hours of work per week, spokeswoman Tiffany Bourre confirmed.
"As are all U.S. employers, we are reviewing our benefits programs as they relate to the recent health care reform," she said. "Since the coverage provided through federal and state exchanges provides the best avenue for our part-time associates ... we will no longer offer medical coverage to this group."
The change took effect Jan. 1 for Saks and starts March 1 for Lord & Taylor. It will affect less than 1 percent of 44,000 associates, Bourre said.
Citing health care reform, discount chain Target Corp. last week also said it would stop health insurance for its part-timers.
"It's always disappointing if a company puts their bottom line ahead of employees' welfare," said Amy Whitcomb Slemmer, executive director of Boston's Health Care for All. "It adds to the insecurity of their employees and makes them less attractive workplaces."
Macy's and Bloomingdale's also dropped their "limited" plan for part-timers on July 1 because it wouldn't have met Affordable Care Act requirements, and a more premium plan would have been cost-prohibitive for workers, spokesman Jim Sluzewski said.
"We offered part-time associates access to a temporary plan to get them through until Dec. 31, 2013 -- when the Affordable Care Act took effect," he said. ___
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