What is the WorkShare Program?
Acushnet plans to utilize a program called WorkShare as part of our return to work protocol. WorkShare is a Massachusetts State sponsored initiative that offers a way to reduce layoffs. In a WorkShare program, previously full-time associates work reduced hours (with compensation pro-rated) and the work is spread over more workers. Those who participate in the program (salaried, non-exempt and hourly) would be eligible for partial unemployment benefits as a result of the reduced hours and wage levels. WorkShare allows employers to keep skilled trained workers, reduce future hiring and retraining costs, be prepared for future business growth and maintain worker productivity. In addition, the federal CARES act stimulus payment of an additional $600 per week will be applied to work sharing associate’s unemployment benefits until the program expires on July 31.
As we begin to bring our Associates back to work in a gradual way, many individuals will be put into the WorkShare program for a period of time. As we get closer and closer to full capacity, the need for a program like this will decrease and we expect to transition active Associates to regular hours and pay ASAP. The Company may have (and is projected to have) multiple WorkShare plans with varying participants, hours and duration operating at the same time and the particulars of the program for each group will be decided upon based on business needs in each of our sites and departments. Consistently with the state expectations of these programs, the Company will continue to provide the same health insurance and retirement benefits to associates that participate in these WorkShare programs. We will provide more information on these programs as the state’s regulations and the Company’s business plans develop. Please contact your manager with any questions.
More information is available at https://www.mass.gov/topics/workshare-program and at https://www.mass.gov/service-details/workshare-information-for-employers.