New poll: 74% of Seattle voters support secure scheduling policies

As baristas and other workers continue to raise the issue of unstable, unpredictable workweeks...

New poll finds 74% of Seattle voters support secure scheduling policies

A new poll of Seattle voters by EMC Research finds overwhelming 74% support for secure scheduling policies, matching the high level of public approval for the $15 minimum wage law reached during the height of that debate. Support is widespread across demographic groups, including 79% of those 18-49, 68% of older voters, and even 49% of self-identified Republicans. (Polling memo available here.)

"$15 was just the beginning," said Sejal Parikh, Executive Director of Working Washington. "A living wage gives you a chance to support yourself, and a secure schedule gives you a chance to live a balanced life. We all need some control over own time, whether that means going back to school, caring for your family, getting a second job, or just living your life."

At a recent briefing for City Council, Professor Susan Lambert discussed her landmark national study which showed just how common unpredictable, unreliable scheduling practices have become. According to Lambert's study:

  • 41% of early-career hourly workers reported getting 1 week or less notice of their schedules.
  • Three quarters reported substantial fluctuations in hours from month to month
  • 90% of food service workers reported wildly fluctuating hours
  • 46% of fathers and 32% of mothers know schedule just one week in advance or less

"It’s really hard to live your life when your priorities are, ‘what’s my schedule? How many hours am I getting?’," explained Working Washington member and Starbucks barista Leila Kopcic. 

"It’s a very sneaky problem," added Working Washington member and Starbucks barista Darrion Sjoquist. "It’s not something as loud as a bank account that’s not full enough for you to feed your kids; it’s more quiet. It’s realizing that you never had time to go back to school. It’s missing that family dinner. It’s not being there for the people that really need you. It’s something you don’t see the effects of until weeks and months and they add up."

Elected officials in Seattle are already showing strong support on this issue, and Seattle voters are clearly ready for the city to make history for a third time in three years by moving forward to pass the nation's strongest secure scheduling law.