Court Ruling Gives Europeans Right To Sick Days While On Vacation

It’s bad enough that Europeans get about twice as much vacation, on average, as we do in North America and now they can take sick days while on vacation too? The European Union Court of Justice, based in Luxembourg, ruled last week that workers who get sick while on vacation should be able to classify those days as sick leave.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m all for vacation time, the more the better, but this ruling is hard for an American to understand. If you came back from a vacation and your boss asked, “How was your trip?” and you responded, “It was OK, but I caught a cold,” do you think he’d offer you a do over? I doubt it.

American conservatives, who tend to distrust all things European, point to rulings like this one as proof of why most European economies are a mess. But the truth is that the European countries that take the most time off – Germany, The Netherlands and Norway are in relatively good shape, while Greeks, who have the sickest economy in Europe, work the most hours on the continent. Maybe the Europeans are on to something and we should start taking sick days while on vacation too.

[Image via cdedbdme on Flickr]