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September 07, 2004
Poll Finds Most Satisfied in Their Jobs

To mark Labor Day, the Associated Press polled Americans on their attitudes toward work. It found most of them satisfied with their jobs, though many expressed concerns about job stress, opportunities for advancement, health care, and retirement benefits.

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About nine in 10 workers described their jobs as at least somewhat satisfying, according to the AP.

"The level of the public's satisfaction with work is high and has been quite stable for the last 30 years," said Tom Smith, director of the General Social Survey at the National Opinion Research Center in Chicago.

The poll, conducted for the AP by Ipsos-Public Affairs, also found 7 in 10 believing they are paid fairly, with men more likely to say that than women.

Six in 10 described work as an important part of their identities.

As for complaints, one of the more frequent was increased stress. In the poll, 34 percent said they were dissatisfied with the level of it in their jobs. Other leading complaints centered on opportunities for advancement as well as health and retirement benefits.

The AP also reported these findings:

  • Adults aged 18 to 29 were most likely to say their job was something they mainly do to earn money.

  • People over 30 were more likely to say they were very satisfied with their jobs.

  • Those most likely to say they were very satisfied were white, married, college-educated, homeowners and Republicans.

  • Sixty-one percent felt strongly that they do a good job balancing work and family. About the same number of men and women made the claim.

  • 36 percent of those surveyed strongly agreed that their job allows them to reach their full potential.


Associated Press article, via FindLaw

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