Sodexo’s behavior a cause for concern


SodexoÕs policy change, one that redefines a full-time employee, is a possible violation of federal law and most certainly a breach of moral code.

UVM professor and Vermont Sen. Phil Baruth and Vermont Fair Food Campaign organizer Kelly Mangan are leading a chargeÑboth social and legislativeÑagainst Sodexo and its new definition of a full-time employee.

The new definition sets the bar at 30 hours or more per week over a 52-week period. Heath coverage and other benefits, namely those specified in the Affordable Care Act, will be offered, as specified under federal law, to only those meeting this criteria.

Many corporations are struggling to adjust to the standards set by the Affordable Care Act and it is understandable that there will be some changes to policy.

What the Cynic is concerned with is the lack of transparency from Sodexo, accompanied by an apparent plethora of disgruntled employees, some of which were mentioned by Baruth.

There is something fishy about this policy change and the way that employees are reacting.

Sodexo has stated that they have a commitment to their employees and that they will compensate those who are losing eligibility for paid vacation and sick time by an increase in pay.

But, as Mangan points out, it doesnÕt matter if an employee is getting paid a slightly better salary if he or she must come in to work while sick or miss an important family event.

The possibility that employees hours are being cut to avoid the federal mandate is even more troubling.

Even more suspect is SodexoÕs unwillingness to communicate with the press. The few comments we have recieved have been through their spokesman Greg Yost.

We had trouble getting statements for our article on this subject and taking photos within Sodexo facilities are near impossible, requiring many conversations with the bigger wigs of Sodexo management.

It is clear that Sodexo employees are taking a hit, and not a pretty one.

The Cynic wants to hear more from this $400,000,000 corporation on exactly how they are not violating employeesÕ rights, or it is all but certain that UVM students, faculty and Burlington activists alike will demand more transparency on the matter.