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Industrial Relations

Creator: n/a
Date: October 25, 1941
Publication: The Goodwill Bulletin
Source: Goodwill Industries International, Inc., Archives, Robert E. Watkins Library

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In view of the fact that there seems to be some misunderstanding concerning the relation of persons served by Goodwill Industries to our organizations, it seems wise to direct attention to this matter.


1. Goodwill Industries are non-profit, charitable organizations, the purpose of which is to provide employment, training and rehabilitation for handicapped and needy persons.


2. Employment in Goodwill Industries is not employment in the commercial sense of the word. Actually persons employed are clients of the organization and the employment itself is a part of the training and rehabilitation program for the person.


3. There is also a difference between "employment" in Goodwill Industries, where the persons employed are clients and the primary purpose is to serve the client, and employment in other charitable organizations, where persons are employed to care for a specific work or responsibility, and are employed primarily because of the fact that they are proficient in work and service required by the organization. In Goodwill Industries every person employed, except the permanent supervisory or professional staff, is or should be a client, and on his or her way through Goodwill Industries to employment in commercial industry or self-employment.


Collective Bargaining


4. In view of the fact that persons in Goodwill Industries are clients and are selected on a basis of need and are kept only as long as Goodwill Industries can be of service to them, and are to be placed in commercial industry as soon as possible, it is quite impossible to set up a program of collective bargaining in Goodwill Industries. The organizations serve their clients according to their individual needs and according to the resources of the agency. The clients are expected to produce in accordance with their ability, and it is expected that during their employment at Goodwill Industries they will so improve that they may be placed in industry.


5. In general, seniority rating is impossible at Goodwill Industries. The length of service in Goodwill Industries depends upon the need of the client for services of the agency as determined on an individual case work basis, the resources of the agency, the cooperation of the client in his own rehabilitation program, and the relative need of all clients and prospective clients.




6. Wages at Goodwill Industries depend on agency income and client ability. The agency income is determined by the quantity and quality of material collected, the productivity of clients, the marketability of products, and the cash subsidies available to supplement actual income of the organization from its industrial activities. A goal of a minimum rate of 30cts per hour has been established with the possibility of higher rates being paid in accordance with the training and skill required for certain operations. It is possible that loss able persons may be paid such proportion of 30cts per hour, or other established rates, as their productivity bears to the productivity of the average able person in similar fields of work. Likewise, more able persons should be paid in accordance with their larger production.




7. Goodwill Industries have established the goal of a 40-hour week for its workers, and this, for the most part, can be observed. The possible exceptions are the clients in the transportation department, those which service the transportation department, and the watchman. Even in the transportation department an average of 40 hours per week can be observed. It is difficult, however, to maintain a 40-hour maximum for each week.


Goodwill Industries are dependent upon the collection of donated, discarded materials, in order to provide service to handicapped and disadvantaged persons. This material must be collected when desired by the contributor. There are seasons of the year when the transportation department faces collection "peaks" which are beyond the control of the organization. Under ordinary circumstances the best way to handle this is through the averaging of hours, so that the clients may take time off in the slack periods to make up for overtime having been worked in the previous busy period, such time being taken off on an hour for hour basis (this assumes that the clients are paid on a weekly basis). If, by chance, the client should leave before he has had an opportunity to take off all of the time which he has had coming, he would be paid for the additional time due him at the time of his leaving.


However, during the time the Goodwill Industries are cooperating with the Wage and Hour Division, and the transportation activities of the Goodwill Industries are construed by the Wage and Hour Division to be under the Fair Labor Standards Act, all transportation workers should be compensated at the rate of time and one-half for overtime, or through a special prepayment plan, be allowed an hour and one-half off for every hour of overtime worked. Overtime should be kept at a minimum because of the fact that it takes money to pay for the extra cost of overtime which would ordinarily go to additional handicapped persons, and actually there is no increase in performance in an overtime hour paid for at the rate of time and one-half.

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