Tuesday, May 29, 2012
At the facility where I work, the custom for major holidays is that the 3-11 shift calls out, thereby leaving the 7-3 shift stuck on a double, missing the outside social aspects of the day. There is no additional pay for working a holiday. You can use a sick day or personal day to call out with no repercussions. The heaviest hit holidays are Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Eve. There is not such thing as rotating holiday coverage.
I was fortunate to be off on Thanksgiving. I was about three hours away in another state when the shift supervisor called me at 1 pm, "desperate." I told her no and stated where I was. The response, "So you can be here by 3?" I realized that she had no idea where this other state was and I might as well have said, "I'm just sitting at home, two minutes away, watching reruns on television." The unit manager let me have off on Thanksgiving because, as she explained, "The real holiday is Friday when we get up early to shop." She wasn't kidding. Most of my coworkers have very little experience with American culture. This does not stop them from trying to educate me, though.