Posts made in January 2018

14 million Americans will stay home from work on #SuperSickMonday

February 1, 2018

On the day after the Super Bowl LLI, nearly 14 million working Americans intend to call in sick—not because of a cough, a cold, or the flu—but to “recover” from watching the big game, based on findings of a survey released on January 31.

The study, commissioned by Mucinex and The Workforce Institute at Kronos—and conducted by The Harris Poll among 2,033 U.S. adults— revealed that 19% of employed Americans claimed that they had previously missed work on the Monday after the Super Bowl. Additionally, 25% say that the Monday after the game should be considered a national holiday.

Additional results from the survey revealed:

  • Game-time decision: 60% of employed Americans say that, if they are going to call out sick or take a personal day, they make that decision after the game has started or the following day.
  • Moms and dads DO take sick days: 21% of employed parents who plan to watch the Super Bowl (and have children under 18 years old) versus only 5% of employed Americans (without children under 18) who plan to watch the game say they are likely to call out “sick” the following Monday.
  • Cough, cough. “I’m not feeling great, boss.” Cough, cough: When asked about the most common excuses they have used to call in sick after the game, Americans say fever (26%), sore throat (14%) or headache (12%).

“We’ve been researching the Big Game’s effect on the workforce for more than a decade and while numbers may fluctuate each year, one clear fact remains: #SuperSickMonday is often the biggest day in America for calling out of work,” said Joyce Maroney, executive director of The Workforce Institute at Kronos. “Employers are likely to notice quieter workplaces come Monday, and our advice is to embrace the Big Game and use it as an opportunity to build camaraderie in the workplace, while encouraging employees to communicate their likely need for a day off well before kickoff.”

Mucinex kicked off its tongue-in-cheek campaign this week with a teaser television creative (:15 spot – “Calling In”) and will build up to a post-game television commercial airing Sunday evening on NBC-TV. The ad highlights #SuperSickMonday  by depicting the letdown people experience after the game.

The Mucinex anti-hero, Mr. Mucus, represents the annoyance and misery that sickness brings, so he is naturally offended by people taking a “sick day” when they’re not actually sick. The tagline playfully conveys to those taking off: Enjoy your “sick day,” America. And when you’re really sick, take Mucinex.

Mucinex’s #SuperSickMonday is an integrated marketing campaign, developed by McCann.

Research contact: mpolikoff@devriesglobal.com

31% say hiding bank accounts is worse than infidelity

February 1, 2018

Many Americans may prefer their significant others to take secret lovers rather than hide bank accounts from them, according to findings of a CreditCards.com poll released on January 21.

In a national survey of 1,372 U.S. adult who are in relationships, conducted on behalf of CreditCard.com by YouGov, 31% said keeping a credit card, checking or savings account hidden from a spouse or romantic partner is worse than physical cheating.

Surprisingly enough, a hefty 15 million Americans who are in live-in romantic relationships said they’re currently guilty of this kind of financial infidelity, and another 9 million said they had been in the past.

Experts agree that a secret account – depending on what it’s used for – represents a violation of trust. “You don’t know what the other person is spending money on,” commented Sonya Britt-Lutter, associate professor of Personal Financial Planning planning at Kansas State University. “Are they spending it on another person, or are they spending it on something else that pleases them in a way that you’re not pleasing them as a partner or spouse?

“I think it’s the same type of ‘What am I doing that’s not good enough for you?’ feeling, whether it’s financial or physical cheating.”

Among the other key findings of the financial infidelity poll:

  • Living together makes secrecy more difficult. A full 23% of respondents in relationships – living together or apart – said they have kept accounts hidden from their partners. People who don’t live with their lovers were significantly more likely to say this than those who do.
  • Financial cheating may hurt more when you’re earning less. People who make less than $40,000 per year were more likely than those with higher incomes to say that keeping a secret account is worse than having an affair.
  • Most of us shoot straight with our partners about money. Eighty-five percent of spoken-for respondents said they’re honest with their significant others when it comes to money.
  • Some of us don’t think the honesty is mutualHowever, only 77% said they believe their spouses or partners are truthful to them about finances.
  • If you don’t talk about it, you can’t fight about it. Eleven percent of people in relationships said they never discuss money with their partners. Women were significantly more likely to say this than men.

Kansas State University’s Britt-Lutter said it’s difficult to pin down reasons why people financially cheat. One simple explanation: We like to keep spending on things we used to while single, even though a partner finds it wasteful or frivolous.

“A lot of it boils down to a difference in values,” Britt-Lutter said. “If there’s something that I value that you don’t value, I’m still going to spend money on it because it’s something that I think is important. I’m just not going to tell you about it to avoid the argument.”

Research contact: Brady.Porche@creditcards.com

48% of U.S. viewers ‘very positive’ about Trump’s State of the Union address

February 1, 2018

In CNNinstant polling” results, nearly half (48%) of Americans who viewed President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address on January 30 said they had a “very positive” impression of the speech—down from 57% of  the audience after his first address, to match Barack Obama’s rating after his first State of the Union address.

Conducted on behalf of the news network by SSRS, the poll resulted in “ the lowest net positive rating for a State of the Union address since at least 1998, when CNN first asked the question,” the researchers stated. There is no equivalent poll for addresses before 1998.

There are some important caveats, the network pointed out: This survey reflected the views of only those who watched the speech-—not of all Americans. The poll was conducted among a group of Americans who said in prior interviews that they planned to watch the speech and were willing to be contacted after its conclusion. People who choose to watch a political speech tend to be more supportive of the speaker than the general population; this sample was about 7 points more Republican than the entire American population.

A narrow majority of viewers (54%) said they think Trump has the right priorities, down from 63% from a similar poll after his speech last year to a joint session of Congress. Not quite half (45%) said he hasn’t paid attention to the country’s most important problems. Still, fully 62% of respondents said they think his policies will move the country in the right direction.

Conversely, more than 40% of viewers said they were not confident in his abilities to carry out his duties as President.

Only 56% of viewers say they think his policies are headed in the right direction on immigration—down 6 points since his 2017 speech. His proposals on other issues rated higher: Roughly 80% of respondents said he has the right direction on infrastructure and 70% said he is going the right direction on the economy.

Research contact: @ryanstruyk

Americans suddenly say they feel awkward around those who identify as LGBTQ

January 31, 2018

For the first time in four years, a poll by GLAAD has found that fewer heterosexual Americans are comfortable with their LGBT peers.

The poll of more than 2,000 “non-LGBTQ adults” nationwide—conducted on GLAAD’s behalf by The Harris Poll and released on January 25—found that fewer than half of straight respondents (49%) reported being “very” or “somewhat” comfortable with LGBTQ people across seven situations. This represented a significant decline from the 53% who reported being comfortable the previous year—and the first time that the Accelerating Acceptance report has shown a drop in support for the LGBTQ population.

In particular, the respondents said they felt awkward in personal situations. Indeed, this year, a substantially larger number of those polled noted that they would be uncomfortable learning that a family member is LBGTQ (30% versus 27% last year), with their child’s teacher being LGBTQ (31% versus 28%) or learning that their own doctor is LGBTQ (31% verus 28%).

Conversely, 55% of LGBTQ adults reported experiencing discrimination because of sexual orientation or gender identity within the past year. This number is a significant, 11-percentage-point increase from the previous poll (44%).

To combat the rising threats to LGBTQ acceptance, GLAAD has launched the GLAAD Media Institute—a training, consulting, and research venture that, the organization said, “is designed to build upon and furthers GLAAD’s successful legacy of leveraging media, business and cultural institutions to effect positive change with advocates around the world.”

Research contact: mgoodman@glaad.org

16% say Trump tweets policy; 54% believe he ‘unloads’ online

January 31, 2018

More than half of Americans (54%) they think President Donald Trump uses Twitter simply to “express himself”—not to announce official policy—an Economist/YouGov survey released on January 29 has found. And make that more than 75% of Republicans.

Others say they are not so sure (30%) or that they do think the tweets are meant as government policy (16%).

However, explaining himself in a December 30 tweet, the POTUS said, “I use Social Media not because I like to, but because it is the only way to fight a VERY dishonest and unfair ‘press,’ now often referred to as Fake News Media. Phony and non-existent ‘sources’ are being used more often than ever. Many stories & reports are pure fiction!”

Indeed, Americans clearly have mixed views about the tweets. Only one in four say they believe most of them, and only 7% believe all of them. Republicans, although more trustful, don’t accept all the tweets. Although a majority of Republicans (57%) believe most of what the President puts into his tweets, just 17% of Republicans believe all of them.

But, the pollsters say, there also is “a clear feeling that the President, himself, believes what he is tweeting. Nearly 60% of Americans think he believes what he is writing all or most of the time.

And more than one-third of both Republicans and Democrats say Trump believes what he is tweeting “all” of the time.

Finally, what the tweets do is give the President an opportunity to attack his opponents. The most negatively evaluated tweets are attack tweets; the most positively assessed ones are those that celebrate sacrifice and holidays.

And attack is what a majority believe the tweets mainly do—especially according to Democrats (77%).

Throughout the year, the Economist/YouGov polls have been asking the public whether what the President is doing in using Twitter is appropriate or inappropriate. The public has consistently said the President’s Twitter use is inappropriate, often by better than two to one. This week is no exception: only 25% call the President’s use of Twitter appropriate; while 58% disagree. A majority of Republicans say his use is appropriate.

Research contact: kfrankovic@yahoo.com

25% of U.S. workers have had a boss whose major illness affected the company

January 31, 2018

One-quarter (25%) of U.S. employees have worked with an executive who became severely ill and whose ailment affected the company’s business or productivity; based on findings of a poll by HealthMine, a Dallas-based health intelligence firm, released on January 25.

The HealthMine 2018 Rising Risk Survey queried 500 full-time U.S. employees ages 26 to 64 who currently are enrolled in a healthcare plan sponsored by their employers. The survey was fielded by Research Now SSI.

The survey results highlight the importance of identifying key managers and implementing contingency and succession plans, should these employees suddenly become sick, HealthMine said.

“Chances are people who are most important to a company’s success are working 50- or 60-hour weeks and could be neglecting their own personal health,” said HealthMine CEO Bryce Williams.

“As a result [of this neglect],” Williams points out, “many have one or more diseases and do not know it. This is important because the health status of key employees is a major component of a company’s risk profile. Failing to intervene early, or to plan for illness, can have a detrimental impact on the performance of the business.

“That such a high percentage of employees have found themselves in situations in which executive illness has created problems for their company suggests there is more work to be done in coming to terms with the risk.”

Research contact: 1-469-730-5320

Suffer the children: UK kids are more scared of Trump than of nuclear war

January 30, 2018

British children are more anxious about Donald Trump’s U.S. presidency than about the threat of nuclear war, based on findings of a survey released on January 23 by the Mental Health Foundation (MHF) of Britain

One-third of children between the ages of five and 18 are experiencing “widespread anxiety” about Trump and terrorism, according to the study, conducted on behalf of MHF by YouGov and published by the International Business Times.

About 1,9 00 U.K. parents were asked to identify what they thought their sons or daughters, between the ages of five and 18, were anxious about. Forty-one percent said that terrorism was their child’s biggest concern, with 33% saying that Donald Trump and his administration also made their children feel very anxious.

Indeed, terrorism and Trump were ranked as more anxiety-inducing than global warming and the threat of nuclear war. About one-third of parents (32%) said their sons and daughters were worried about climate change, while 23% said the possibility of nuclear war worried them.

Thirteen percent of parents said their children were so worried about a terrorist attacks that they had started avoiding public transport or going to busy places. Eight percent said their children were having nightmares about global events.

In response to the survey’s findings, Dr Camilla Rosan of the Mental Health Foundation said: “We often forget that distressing world events can have a significant impact on the mental health of our children. This is especially true in the digital age, [when] … it’s no longer possible to shield our children from worrying or scary news.”

She suggested that parents not only provide their children with the relevant facts about a terrorist attack, but also put things in perspective and reassure them that they are safe.

“Anxiety about scary news events is normal, but not something children have to deal with alone,” she said. “Parents can really help tackle problems early and support good mental health for their children by talking about these issues in an open and honest way.

Research contact press@mentalhealth.org.uk

Views of abortion vary widely among U.S. religious groups

January 30, 2018

More than four decades after the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on Roe v. Wade legalized abortion nationwide in 1973, most Americans (57%) still support the right of a woman to choose, according to a Pew Research Center survey released on January 22.

However, a substantial minority (40%) say abortion should be illegal in all or most cases—and within some U.S. denominations and religious groups, this figure is much higher.

Specifically, the majority of Jehovah’s Witnesses (75%) and Mormons (70%) say abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, according to findings of Pew’s 2014 Religious Landscape Study—a survey of more than 35,000 Americans in all 50 states.

The same holds true for members of some evangelical churches; including the Pentecostal denominations, Church of God (Cleveland, Tennessee) (77%) and Assemblies of God (71%), and America’s largest evangelical denomination, the Southern Baptist Convention (66%). Indeed, nearly twice as many evangelicals say they oppose legal abortion as support it (63% to 33%).

By comparison, only 35% of those who are part of the mainline Protestant tradition say abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, with 60% in support of keeping abortion legal. Members of the Episcopal Church (79%) and the United Church of Christ (72%) are especially likely to support legal abortion, while most members of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the mainline Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (65%) also take this position.

Among those who wholeheartedly support choice? Unitarian Universalists (90%) and American Jews (83%) are much more supportive of legal abortion than the general population. And most people who have no religious affiliation – particularly atheists and agnostics (87% each) – also support abortion rights.

Research contact: info@pewresearch.org.

Small business owners support new tax law, worry about healthcare

January 30, 2018

On January 23, the Job Creators Network (JCN), which calls itself “the voice of small business” in America,  released the results of a national poll that found strong overall approval of the Trump Administration’s policies—especially, the new tax legislation—but also demonstrated growing concerns over the affordability of healthcare.

The nationwide poll of 500 small business owners was conducted on behalf of JCN by Roosevelt Opinion Research.

Small business owners revealed broad support for Trump Administration policies and said that “Republicans are better suited to deal with economic issues over Democrats,” according to the JCN findings. In fact, 63.8% of respondents agreed that Trump policy changes have helped their businesses and 57.5 % said that Republicans are better at managing the economy—as opposed to 14% who said the same for Democrats. Much of the support is likely due to the general policy of deregulation that has been pursued by President Trump since taking office.

Specifically, the poll established that 68.4% of respondents viewed the new tax cut legislation favorably. Since much of the media coverage surrounding the bill has been critical—57.3% percent—these numbers provide insight into what the biggest job creators in the country are expecting to gain from the new tax relief.

However, many small business owners (76.5%) expressed concerns over rising healthcare costs and their ability to provide affordable coverage to their employees as well Indeed, 62.9% said the prices prevented them from offering care to their employees.

Research contact: jackson.shedelbower@jobcreatorsnetwork.com

President’s counsel averted firing of Mueller last June

January 29, 2018

Although U.S. President Donald Trump stated at a June 9  press conference in the White House Rose Garden that he “would be “100% willing” to testify under oath to Robert Mueller and his team at the Justice Department, that same month, he tried to have the special counsel fired, according to a January 25 report by The New York Times.

Trump is said by the Times story to have gone to White House Counsel Don McGahn with a list of reasons why Mueller’s appointment represented a conflict of interest with the investigation—among them, a dispute over fees at the Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia; a former relationship with the law firm that now represented the POTUS’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner; and Mueller’s interview for the FBI director position by the White House just the day before he was appointed to helm the DOJ investigation.

With that list in hand, the president demanded that McGahn call Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and order that Mueller be ousted, based on the Times report. McGahn balked at the idea—threatening to quit if the president pressed him on it. According to the Times, Trump then backed off.

In drawing a line, McGahn is said to have headed off a Constitutional crisis. He also supported the will of the American people: More than two-thirds of Americans (68%) think Mueller should be allowed to finish his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election and attempts by the White House to obstruct justice —and only 14% think he should be fired, a Marist Poll revealed on January 17

When asked about his actions by reporters as he arrived in Davos, Switzerland, for meetings with global political and business leaders attending the World Economic Forum, the President said, “Fake news, folks. A typical New York Times fake story.”

Research contactLee.Miringoff@Marist.edu

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