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Maries Two Cents

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Homeland Security Advisory

November 10, 2004

Feed Shark Turbo Tagger

Support Sears This Christmas and Throughout The Year

By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 9, 2004 -- Sears, Roebuck and Co. is
proving to be a friend of
military families -- from making up lost pay for its
employees called to active
duty in the National Guard and reserve, to donating $2
million to the National
Military Family Association for military family programs.

The Chicago-based retailer announced in September that it
is extending its
military pay differential and benefits coverage to five
years. This is the
second extension this year. In January, Sears extended its
military pay
differential to three years, from 30 months.

The announcement, which affects about 200 full-time Sears
employees, also means
they can continue participating in the company's life
insurance, medical and
dental programs, if they choose.

By law, companies are required to provide deployed
employees access to 18
months of continued medical coverage at the employees'
expense. But Sears'
policy, which provides these benefits up to five years,
goes far beyond the
law's requirements.

Sears spokesman Chris Brathwaite said the policy isn't new
for Sears, which he
said has extended the pay differential many times in the
past for its
employees, including those who served on military duty in
Operation Desert
Storm and, more recently, in Croatia.

In fact, he said, Sears always has supported its employees'
military service,
and store records show the retailer helped make up lost pay
for its employees
who served during World War I.

"Sears regards service to our country as one of the
greatest sacrifices our
young men and women can make," Brathwaite said. "We are
happy to do our part to
lessen the burden they bear at this time."

The retailer has demonstrated its support for the military
in a variety of
other ways, including a $2 million donation made earlier
this year to the
National Military Family Association. The donation, the
largest in the
association's history, is helping develop and enhance
programs that address
challenges faced by military families.

Part of the funding went to Operation Purple, a summer camp
program held this
summer for children of deployed servicemembers.

Sears and the National Military Family Association also
co-published a book, "A
Tribute to Military Families: Letters of Thanks from Our
Nation's Children."
The book is designed to increase awareness about the
importance of military
families and is used as a fundraiser for the association's

Sears also partners with the Army and 12 other companies in
the Army Spouse
Employment Partnership, to help military spouses find jobs

The company participates in the Partnership for Youth
Success program, which
helps servicemembers leaving the military find work and a
military exchange
program in which active-duty servicemembers with logistics
expertise work for
the company for a year.

Sears' support for deployed servicemembers and their
families earned the
company the American Association of Family & Consumer
Sciences' 21st Century
Community Champion Award in July.

In presenting the award, association president Virginia
Vincenti said Sears
helps "support the families of these men and women, and
consequently, support
the communities in which they live."


Blogger Libertarian of Pennsylvania said...

This is a huge relief to those who are serving. I am glad to see a huge corporation offer benefits such as this to our service personel. It is very rare this day and age when a company actually cares this much from its employees, instead of billion dollar profits. There should be tax incentives given to Sears & Roebuck for offering this to our military personnel. Not many companies offer this type of benefits and often times "get rid" of people who have been called to active duty, especially in Right to Work states.

November 11, 2004 9:08 AM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...

Well it seems there are alot more Corporations out there that are involved. As I find them I will post them or add them to my "For The Troops" Links at the side.
I always thought that during War time it was illegal to dismiss a worker because he/she got called up for duty, if it isnt it should be.

November 11, 2004 3:19 PM  
Blogger Libertarian of Pennsylvania said...

It does truely surprise me because, my company that i work for included offers no severance pay while on active duty. It is illegal to fire an active service duty when they have been called to duty, but like anything else there are loopholes in the law. The employer can say "We eliminated the position" or "We found someone with more qualifications for the job." Especially in a Right to Work state, it makes it much more likely to happen. In fact they may have been replaced due to the fact that the new hire will work for lower wages or part time where the employer doesn't have to pay benefits, or both. It is a sad situation for our active duty service personnel.

November 12, 2004 5:25 AM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...

I am glad you mentioned this I thought it deserved some looking into, at a quick glance this law seems to not only protect the rights of the "Called Up" Soldier but has to hire them back. I think I will link to this for Military Families as well. Thank You for bringing this up :-)

November 12, 2004 11:02 AM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...

I forgot, I think what Sears is doing is basicaly above what they are required to do by law. Which is phenominal at this point in time. They could have stuck with the basic requirements but they chose to go the extra mile which I think they deserve some Christmas shopping this year! I'm for any Business large or small that support our Servicemembers and add that extra something.

November 12, 2004 11:13 AM  

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