Friday, October 28, 2011

Sickly Poles

Yay! We are again the best in Europe! According to the daily Gazeta Wyborcza, Poles took by far the most sick leave days of all EU nations! Oh, wait, it wasn't a contest? Ahhh, the lower the score, the better... so we don't get a special prize? But it cost us over 23 billion zlotys!

The amazing wave of sickness afflicting Poles must be due to some outside factors like pollution, extremely harsh weather conditions, or shortage of food, right?! Right?!

Unfortunately, it seems the reality is much much more dire and comes down to a simple truth: Poles cheat on sick leave. If they need additional vacation time, they go to the doctor. If they need a break, they go to the doctor. Even if they need to go to Germany for a (not so) lucrative seasonal job, they go to the doctor.

Why do people bother to get sick leave? Well if they do so, they get 80 percent of their salary during that time with no additional checks or forms needed. Sometimes employers cannot refuse a sick leave, but they can turn down your vacation time application, so it is just easier to go on sick leave.

Some would say, oh, Poles are just lazy, but that is not necessarily true as Poland also tops the ranking of most overtime hours worked. This wouldn't be because those who are healthy have to do the jobs of those that are sick, would it?

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