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Alien in America

Employee’s Benefits in Four Different Countries

Employee’s Benefits in Four Different Countries

30 May 2017 Karina S. Henkel

As a German ex-employee I am very spoiled: six weeks paid vacation, unlimited paid sick days, and strong worker’s rights. Coming to the US was a culture shock in this respect. I knew what I had to expect before I moved here, but I was quite anxious about how it was going to work out for me. I anticipated the worst because I was sure that if there are no laws that tell employers what benefits to give their employees, employees would not get anything at all.

benefits, health insurance, vacation
work

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A Curious Definition of Job Security

7 Apr 2017 Karina S. Henkel

A Curious Definition of Job Security What is job security? And what does it mean in America?

job security,money
work

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Working in Retirement

14 Mar 2017 Karina S. Henkel

Working in Retirement I wrote in my  August 2016 post about my 74 year old friend who was desperately looking for a job. A couple months ago she found  two part-time jobs: one for the weekends and the other one for the weekdays. Now she works 36 hours over  six days a week.

retirement
work

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Working in my Pajamas

18 Feb 2017 Karina S. Henkel

Working in my Pajamas This is so awesome! We had a big snow storm here. This time it didn’t hit us on a weekend, but on a Monday. Yes, that always means a lot of snow blowing and shoveling (no matter which day of the week the snow storm comes) but that also means...

snow storm
work

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Is Anybody Out There?

5 Jan 2017 Karina S. Henkel

Is Anybody Out There? I sincerely try not to complain about the fact that Americans get so much less vacation and sick days than Germans. Especially in this blog, I want to look at the bright side of whatever my new life abroad offers me.

holiday,vacation
work

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Infected by American Optimism

8 Dec 2016 Karina S. Henkel

Infected by American Optimism Why am I not afraid of working for a company that could shut down any minute? I should worry like crazy and be busy looking for a job. But I don’t and I’m not. Am I infected by American optimism or ignorance, or did I just learn to live with...

employment,unemployment
work

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Unenployment avoided

21 Nov 2016 Karina S. Henkel

Unenployment avoided November 8th was not only the presidential Election Day. It was also the day when Mainers voted for their state representatives and senators. Every two years Mainers have to choose which party is going to represent them in the Maine State House.

politics,unemployment
work

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Many Days Off

3 Oct 2016 Karina S. Henkel

Many Days Off Compared to German labor rights, Americans seem to have a hard work life. This might be true, generally speaking, but it really depends on what kind of an employer you find. Before I moved to the US I was horrified, believing that I would hardly ever find the time to...

vacation
work

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Job Search with 74

4 Aug 2016 Karina S. Henkel

Job Search with 74 I have a friend who is 74 years old. She is exactly as old as my mother, but she doesn’t feel like a mother to me. I met her five years ago, shortly after I moved here, and since then we regularly meet and chat for hours.

job search,age discrimination
work

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My Friend, the Truck Driver

4 Apr 2016 Karina S. Henkel

My Friend, the Truck Driver I have a dear friend. She is American but with German roots. She is one of the few Americans who actually speaks German and lived in Germany for several years, too. She is a little and agile lady in her mid-sixties with long, white braided hair.

age,career change
work

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No Job Security in the US?

15 Mar 2016 Karina S. Henkel

No Job Security in the US? Most employee arrangements are at-will agreements. That means that an employee can be fired any time for no reason and without any notice. The Supreme Court of California made it even more clear: “[A]n employer may terminate its employees at will, for any or no reason ...

employment,work,job security
work

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