Employers Offer Sandy-Affected Workers Hot Showers, Housing, Cash
Damaged roads and disrupted public transit prevented many New York City-area commuters from getting to work in the week following Hurricane Sandy. And because of mass power outages, tens of thousands of offices were shut down.
But that didn't mean employees were all stiffed their paychecks. In fact, many employers in the Tri-State area did whatever they could to ensure that their workers were cared for, as the region reeled from the fiercest storm in its history, which left tens of thousands homeless.
While companies have made grand, charitable gestures to the hurricane relief effort, sometimes even doubling employee contributions to the Red Cross or Salvation Army, less well-known are the kindnesses that they've shown their employees who were severely affected by the storm.
Some were basic, like paying employees for the time they couldn't work, while other companies offered workers thousands of dollars in temporary housing subsidies. One New York CEO, Jason Goldberg of Fab.com, an online design store, even opened his own home to workers who lacked power at theirs.
There were limits to employer generosity, however. Several companies in the area granted their workers a few days of paid time off, but then counted any further time away as vacation, reports The Wall Street Journal. The iconic entertainment company, Madison Square Garden Co., set the cap at three days. A powerful nor'easter expected to strike the Sandy-battered region Wednesday promises to test employer patience even more, with the storm's rain and winds likely to stall recovery for homes and businesses, and more New York and New Jersey residents told to evacuate.