The Part-time Solution and the Part-time Problem

The Part-time Solution and the Part-time Problem

Solutions to problems often carry unanticipated consequences. This is the case with part-time work in America today. Part-time work can be a reasonable way of dealing with the work-family dilemma. It has been discussed widely in the press, among corporate managers and working people. Clearly, flexible work schedules meet the needs of many dual-career couples.

As the United Parcel Service strike in 1997 made clear, many American workers settle for part-time employment when their preference would be for full time and the steadier incomes and benefits that come with it. But part-time work is also voluntarily chosen by millions of people—the young who need to combine work with school; older workers who want to keep their hand in the workplace but also to cut back; and workers who have children at home they need to care for.

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Lima