Pink slip

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Pink slip is an American term that dates back to the turn of the twentieth century. We will examine the meaning of pink slip, some possible sources of the origin of the term and some examples of its use in sentences.

A pink slip is a written notice that one’s employment is terminated. Supposedly, the term comes from the practice of putting a slip of pink paper in a terminated employee’s envelope as notice. Interestingly, many people have attempted to find the origin of this belief, with little success. Some typesetting and other jobs distributed pink slips of paper in pay envelopes when employees’ w0rk was not up to standard, with the idea that too many pink slips would result in dismissal. This may be the source of the term pink slip to mean job termination. Another possible origin is the practice of printing cancellation notices for vaudeville acts on pink slips of paper. The plural form is pink slips.


Instead of a pink slip, Hinrichs was given a promotion to the newly created position of president of global operations, in charge of the Dearborn-based automaker’s global product development, manufacturing and labor affairs, among other things. (Crain’s Detroit Business)

In January, Infosys let go of close to 9,000 employees and Cognizant, news report suggests, will be giving the pink slip to anywhere between 6,000 to 10,000 employees. (The Daily News & Analysis)

On Thursday, state employees will be dealt the same blow as many of our state’s educators and workers across the private sector this year: a pink slip. (The Alaska Dispatch News)

Boisselle received her pink slip from Brighton the day before she received the Boston Municipal Research Bureau’s prestigious Shattuck Public Service award in 2016, and she also was one of six finalists for the 2017 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year Award. (The Bay State Banner)