Major Liberal Companies Paying Workers to Protest

Since the election, scores of activists have taken to the streets, town halls and rallies to blast President Trump. That’s all with the blessing of their boss thanks to social justice benefits and paid time off work policies that are growing in popularity.

At San Francisco marketing firm Traction, social justice benefits take the form of two so-called "Days of Action" a year. "They can take part in a protest, they can volunteer for a cause that is meaningful to them," says CEO Adam Kleinberg. "Civic engagement is a foundation of our democracy, and companies should encourage it."

Kleinberg says while he's liberal, Traction's new policy is neutral: so long as it's not a group that promotes violence, such as the Ku Klux Klan, his 50 employees can support whatever political group or cause they want. They must first get approval from management and submit a request for the time off. But in the famously left-leaning Bay Area, conservative activists don't buy it.

Several big corporations are also responding to their worker’s desire to advocate. Facebook told its employees they could take paid time off to May Day rallies which, in many cases, were largely about defending immigrant rights. Earlier this year, Comcast gave its workers paid time off to protest Trump’s travel ban.

Most companies give their workers time off to vote, but "this is different – this is going to a new level," said Scott Dobroski, community expert with employment firm Glassdoor.


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