by Donna Martinez
Former Senior Writer and Editor, John Locke Foundation
One of my concerns about our society is that we have many folks who believe the answer to virtually any problem — real or perceived — is government intervention. My view is the opposite: Let’s rely on ourselves to solve problems first, and let’s turn to government only when it’s clear we aren’t able to adequately address a problem individually. Here’s a great example of the wrong approach:
In New York City, a new bill aims to make it illegal for employers to require workers to check any work-related electronic communications outside normal work hours. If companies violated the proposed law, they’d have to pay a fine. The bill is modeled on a similar right-to-disconnect law that went into effect in France in 2017.
Clearly, the New York City Councilman who introduced this legislation doesn’t agree with my approach.
Espinal argues that it’s not enough to hope companies create these types of policies, given that most do not now. “I feel that employees themselves find it difficult to advocate for themselves, seeing how high competition is here,” he says. “So it was important for the government to step in, as it has in decades past creating legislation and laws to protect employees in the workplace.”
Let’s hope this goes nowhere, for if this kind of policy prevails in New York, it won’t be long before it crops up in North Carolina.