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Wage and Hour Division
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Wage and Hour Division (WHD)

Chapter 2

Employees- Use of Leave

Table 2.1. Employees Taking Leave: 1995 and 2000 Surveys

Number of employees taking leave (for a covered reason) in the previous 18 months** - 1995 Survey : 20,359,000
Number of employees taking leave (for a covered reason) in the previous 18 months** - 2000 Survey : 23,830,000
Percent of employee population - - 1995 Survey : 16.0%
Percent of employee population - - 2000 Survey : 16.5%

** Difference between 1995 and 2000 is significant at p<.05. Source: 1995 and 2000 Survey of Employees.


Figure 2.1. Number of Leaves Taken: 2000 Survey (Percent of Leave-Takers)

1 leave : 75.2%
2 leaves: 14.5%
3 or more leaves: 10.2%

Figure 2.2. Length of Longest Leave: 2000 Survey (Percent of Leave-Takers)

0-10 Days: 54.1%
11- 40 Days: 26.8%
41-60 Days: 9.2 %
More than 60 Days: 9.9%

Table 2.2. Length of Second Longest Leave: 2000 Survey

Length of Second Longest Leave: 1 - 3 days
Percent of Those Taking More Than One Leave: 42.9%

Length of Second Longest Leave: 4 - 5 days
Percent of Those Taking More Than One Leave: 26.3%

Length of Second Longest Leave: 6 - 10 days
Percent of Those Taking More Than One Leave: 14.1%

Length of Second Longest Leave: 11 - 20 days
Percent of Those Taking More Than One Leave:7.4%

Length of Second Longest Leave: More than 20 days
Percent of Those Taking More Than One Leave: 9.4%

Number of Leave-Takers Taking More Than One Leave: 5,676,524

Note: Column percents may not total to 100% due to rounding. Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.3. Reasons for Taking Leave Across All Leaves Taken in Previous 18 Months: 2000 Survey

Reason for Leave: Own health
Percent of Leave-Takers: 52.4%

Reason for Leave: Maternity-disability
Percent of Leave-Takers: 7.9%

Reason for Leave: Care for a newborn, newly adopted, or newly placed foster child
Percent of Leave-Takers: 18.5%

Reason for Leave: Care for ill child
Percent of Leave-Takers: 11.5%

Reason for Leave: Care for ill spouse
Percent of Leave-Takers: 6.4%

Reason for Leave: Care for ill parent
Percent of Leave-Takers: 13.0%

Note: Percentages sum to more than 100% due to some persons taking more than one leave. Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.4. Reasons for Taking Leave Across All Leaves Taken, Based on Total Employee Population: 2000 Survey

Reason for Leave: Own health
Percent of All Employees: 8.7%

Reason for Leave: Maternity-disability
Percent of All Employees: 1.3%

Reason for Leave: Care for a newborn, newly adopted, or newly placed foster child
Percent of All Employees: 3.1%

Reason for Leave: Care for ill child
Percent of All Employees: 1.9%

Reason for Leave: Care for ill spouse
Percent of All Employees: 1.1%

Reason for Leave: Care for ill parent
Percent of All Employees: 2.2%

Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.5. Employees' Reasons for Taking Longest Leave: 1995 and 2000 Surveys

Reason for Longest Leave: Own health**
Percent of Leave-Takers 1995 Survey: 61.4%
Percent of Leave-Takers 2000 Survey: 47.2%

Reason for Longest Leave: Maternity-disability**
Percent of Leave-Takers 1995 Survey: 4.6%
Percent of Leave-Takers 2000 Survey: 7.8%

Reason for Longest Leave: Care for a newborn, newly adopted, or newly placed foster child
Percent of Leave-Takers 1995 Survey: 14.3%
Percent of Leave-Takers 2000 Survey: 17.9%

Reason for Longest Leave: Care for ill child
Percent of Leave-Takers 1995 Survey: 8.5%
Percent of Leave-Takers 2000 Survey: 9.8%

Reason for Longest Leave: Care for ill spouse**
Percent of Leave-Takers 1995 Survey: 3.6%
Percent of Leave-Takers 2000 Survey: 5.9%

Reason for Longest Leave: Care for ill parent**
Percent of Leave-Takers 1995 Survey: 7.6%
Percent of Leave-Takers 2000 Survey: 11.4%

** Difference between 1995 and 2000 significant at p<.05.
Note: Column percents may not total to 100% due to rounding.
Source: 1995 and 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.6. Employees' Reasons for Second Longest Leave: 2000 Survey

Reason for Second Longest Leave: Own health
Percent of Persons Taking More Than One Leave: 55.8%

Reason for Second Longest Leave: Maternity-disability
Percent of Persons Taking More Than One Leave: --

Reason for Second Longest Leave: Care for a newborn, newly adopted, or newly placed foster child
Percent of Persons Taking More Than One Leave: 5.1%

Reason for Second Longest Leave: Care for ill child
Percent of Persons Taking More Than One Leave: 20.1%

Reason for Second Longest Leave: Care for ill spouse
Percent of Persons Taking More Than One Leave: 4.2%

Reason for Second Longest Leave: Care for ill parent
Percent of Persons Taking More Than One Leave: 13.0%

-- Indicates less than 10 unweighted cases.
Note: Column percents may not total to 100% due to rounding.
Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.7. Length of Longest Leave by Reason for Leave: 2000 Survey

Length of Longest Leave** : 1 - 3 days
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Own Health: 8.2%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Maternity-Disability: --
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Newborn, Newly Adopted or Foster Child: 10.0%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Child: 26.0%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Spouse: 24.0%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Parent: 17.4%

Length of Longest Leave** : 4 - 5 days
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Own Health: 17.1%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Maternity-Disability: --
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Newborn, Newly Adopted or Foster Child: 27.5%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Child: 23.7%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Spouse: 38.3%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Parent: 32.2%

Length of Longest Leave** : 6 - 10 days
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Own Health: 18.7%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Maternity-Disability: --
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Newborn, Newly Adopted or Foster Child: 17.6%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Child: 31.9%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Spouse: 19.9%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Parent: 30.9%

Length of Longest Leave** : 11 - 30 days
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Own Health: 25.1%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Maternity-Disability: 18.1%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Newborn, Newly Adopted or Foster Child: 13.5%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Child: 14.0%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Spouse: --
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Parent: 13.1%

Length of Longest Leave** : 31 - 60 days
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Own Health: 19.4%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Maternity-Disability: 39.7%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Newborn, Newly Adopted or Foster Child: 21.7%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Child: --
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Spouse: --
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Parent: --

Length of Longest Leave** : More than 60 days
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Own Health: 11.4%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Maternity-Disability: 28.7%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Newborn, Newly Adopted or Foster Child: 9.8%
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Child: --
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Spouse: --
Percent of Leave-Takers for Each Reason - Care for Ill Parent: --

** Difference among reasons for leave is significant at p<.05.
-- Indicates less than 10 unweighted cases.
Note: Column percents may not total to 100% due to rounding.
Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.8. Use of Intermittent Leave: 2000 Survey

Leave-Takers Who: Took intermittent leave at least once in previous 18 months
Percent of Leave-Takers: 27.8%

Leave-Takers Who: Did not take intermittent leave
Percent of Leave-Takers: 72.2%

Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.9. Amount of Leave that was Intermittent: 2000 Survey

Amount of Leave that was Intermittent: Less than half
Percent of Leave-Takers Taking Intermittent Leave: 53.9%

Amount of Leave that was Intermittent: About half
Percent of Leave-Takers Taking Intermittent Leave: 19.6%

Amount of Leave that was Intermittent: More than half
Percent of Leave-Takers Taking Intermittent Leave: 26.4%

Table 2.10. Intermittent Use of Longest Leave: 2000 Survey

Leave-Takers' Longest Leave Was: Intermittent
Percent of Leave-Takers: 20.8%

Leave-Takers' Longest Leave Was: Not intermittent
Percent of Leave-Takers: 79.2%

Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.11. Use of Longest Intermittent Leave on a Routine or As-Needed Basis: 2000 Survey

Intermittent Leave was Taken as: Regular routine
Percent of Those Whose (Longest) Leave was Intermittent: 13.4%

Intermittent Leave was Taken as: As-needed
Percent of Those Whose (Longest) Leave was Intermittent: 86.6%

Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.12. Intermittent Use of Longest Leave by Reason for Leave: 2000 Survey

Reason for Longest Leave**: Own health
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Intermittent: 35.1%
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Not Intermittent: 50.3%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Maternity-disability
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Intermittent: 4.9%
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Not Intermittent: 8.6%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Care for a newborn, newly adopted, or newly placed foster child
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Intermittent: 13.2%
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Not Intermittent: 19.1%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Care for ill child
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Intermittent: 19.1%
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Not Intermittent: 7.4%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Care for ill spouse
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Intermittent: 8.9%
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Not Intermittent: 5.1%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Care for ill parent
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Intermittent: 18.7%
Percent of Leave-Takers Whose Leave was Not Intermittent: 9.6%

** Difference between "intermittent" and "not intermittent" categories is significant at p<.05.
Note: Column percents may not total to 100% due to rounding.
Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.13. Intermittent Use of Longest Leave Within Reasons for Leave: 2000 Survey

Reason for Longest Leave**: Own health
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Intermittent: 15.0%
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Not Intermittent: 85.0%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Maternity-disability
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Intermittent: 12.7%
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Not Intermittent: 87.3%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Care for a newborn, newly adopted, or newly placed foster child
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Intermittent: 14.9%
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Not Intermittent: 85.1%

Reason for Longest Leave**:
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Intermittent: 39.5%
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Not Intermittent: 60.5%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Care for ill child
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Intermittent: 30.9%
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Not Intermittent: 69.1%

Reason for Longest Leave**: Care for ill parent
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Intermittent: 33.1%
Percent of Leave-Takers Within Each Reason Whose Longest Leave Was: Not Intermittent: 66.9%

** Difference between reasons categories is significant at p<.05.
Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.14. Employees Needing But Not Taking Leave: 1995 and 2000 Surveys

Number of employees needing but not taking leave (for a covered reason) in the previous 18 months:
Persons Not Taking Leave 1995 Survey: 3,925,000
Persons Not Taking Leave 200 Survey: 3,520,000

Percent of employee population**:
Persons Not Taking Leave 1995 Survey: 3.1%
Persons Not Taking Leave 200 Survey: 2.4%

** Difference between 1995 and 2000 significant at p<.05.
Source: 1995 and 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.15. Number of Leaves Needed But Not Taken: 2000 Survey

1 leave: Percent of Leave-Needers 44.4%
2 leaves: Percent of Leave-Needers 25.0%
3 - 4 leaves: Percent of Leave-Needers 18.9%
5 or more leaves Percent of Leave-Needers 11.8%

Note: Column percents may not total to 100% due to rounding.
Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.16. Reasons for Needing Leave: 1995 and 2000 Surveys

Reason for Needing Leave: Own health
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 47.7%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 48.1%

Reason for Needing Leave: Maternity-disability
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: --
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: --

Reason for Needing Leave: Care for a newborn, newly adopted, or newly placed foster child
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 9.3%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 9.3%

Reason for Needing Leave: Care for ill child
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 18.6%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 19.6%

Reason for Needing Leave: Care for ill spouse
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 10.2%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 9.0%

Reason for Needing Leave: Care for ill parent
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 20.2%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 22.6%

-- Indicates less than 10 unweighted cases.
Note: Column percentages sum to more than 100% due to some persons needing leave for more than one reason.
Source: 1995 and 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.17. Reasons for Not Taking Leave: 1995 and 2000 Surveys

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Thought job might be lost
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 29.7%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 31.9%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Thought job advancement might be hurt**
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 22.8%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 42.6%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Did not want to lose seniority**
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 15.1%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 27.8%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Not eligible-worked part-time
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 14.3%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 12.3%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Not eligible-had not worked long enough for employer
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: N/A
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 18.4%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Employer denied request**
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 9.9%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 20.8%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Could not afford to take leave**
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 65.9%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 77.6%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Wanted to save leave time
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 28.5%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 34.3%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Work is too important**
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: 40.8%
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 52.6%

Reason for Not Taking Leave: Some other reason
Percent of Leave-Needers 1995 Survey: N/A
Percent of Leave-Needers 2000 Survey: 13.2%

2) Reason not asked about in 1995 survey.
** Difference between 1995 and 2000 is significant at p<.05.
Note: Percentages sum to more than 100% due to some persons reporting multiple reasons for not taking leave.
Source: 1995 and 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.18. Perceived Impact of Pay on Leave-Needers: 2000 Survey

Perceived Impact of Pay: Would have taken leave if some/additional pay had been received
Percent of Leave-Needers Who Could Not Afford to Take Leave: 87.8%

Perceived Impact of Pay: Would not have taken leave if some/additional pay had been received
Percent of Leave-Needers Who Could Not Afford to Take Leave: 12.2%

Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.


Table 2.19. How Leave-Needers Took Care of Their Situation: 2000 Survey

Just lived with it/Suffered through it
Percent of Leave-Needers: 44.1%

Got help from others (family, friends)
Percent of Leave-Needers: 25.0%

Altered work (schedule, duties, etc.)
Percent of Leave-Needers: 12.2%

Took some time off
Percent of Leave-Needers: 13.1%

Did something else
Percent of Leave-Needers: 5.7%

Note: Column percents may not total to 100% due to rounding.
Source: 2000 Survey of Employees.