The false economy of worker's rights

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by supermatelot, Jun 19, 2011.

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  1. I think that although employee law has it's foundations set in protecting the employee in the workplace etc, it has created false expectations and with added union involvment has created many environments where wholly unrealistic demands are seen by some employees as being quite legitimate. Over a period of time this is to the detriment of the whole economy.
    I have cited a few examples on Arrse recently but I will mention again situations that highlight that sometimes a little knowledge is dangerous:

    Employee told cannot smoke here - does a bit of googling and tries to invoke human rights.

    Newly acquired employee crossed over via TUPE feeling very aggrieved due to being pulled in for a "chat" after a string of absences. His previous T&Cs allowed this disciplinary measure but it was never invoked.

    We all know about the underclass and the "It's me rights innit" attitude that prevails. Is this creeping into the employed sector also, aided by increased worker's rights legislation and union involvment?
     
  2. More likely it's employees getting sick of employers doing their damndest to get around those laws designed to protect workers: most factories here "persuade" staff to opt out of Working Time Regs; I heard recently of a multi-national burger emporium telling a potential employee ( my nephew) that his first "shift" would be 30 hours, as he's entitled to 11 hours off between "shifts" they're trying to increase shift length... needless to say he didn't take the job. Meanwhile, I went back to work 2 weeks after a stroke as the doctor couldn't think of any reason why I shouldn't; 6 months on, the firm has just cut my hours ( and pay) by 25% because elf'nsafety are "concerned" about my health, no debate, no medical, nada, zilch, it's suck it up or feck off.
    As to "no smoking", shortly after the ban came in I was stood on a platform at Peterborough station having a fag in peace and bothering nobody. The duty nazi insisted that I couldn't smoke because it was an "enclosed" area. I pointed out that we were, in fact, on an open platform, in winter, in the teeth of a force 8 blizzard.
     
  3. Opting out of work time regs allows more hours to be given - ergo more pay. Same at my place. No persuation but the moment someone is given less than the minimum of 48 per week that they think they are entitled to they scream blue murder!

    Maybe it's just my workplace and my disillusionment with the work ethics of civvies??
     
  4. You should get out more if you actually believe this WUMery. More hours from a working time opt out does not equal more pay. I can guess what you do with your lunch breaks; fleck spittled comments about coons and civil serpants on the Torygraph site is it? As for the burning matyrism of being and ex-matelot/squaddie/crab with your superior work ethic (Sally Bash/sports afternoons /squadron bars /hiding in the vehicle park), do be brief. The only one that believes this is you.
     
  5. Try reading again in the morning when you've sobered up mate ;)
     
  6. I think your examples are more to do with individuals taking the piss than any widespread failing. That's the thing about rules, someone will always try to manipulate them to their own personal advantage. Some of these people will only have the resources of a limited intellect and google while others will have a battery of corporate lawyers. In the round, it works out more to the benefit of the ordinary joe than against.

    As to 'opting out' of the working time directive, like everything else that's a matter of power. I can think of a number of times where I've been effectively placed in a situation where I had no realistic choice but to - entirely voluntarily, of course - 'opt' to work unpaid overtime for an organisation posting bumper profits. It was shit but there was nothing I could do about it other than throw myself on the dole.

    Employers routinely take the piss - why should employees be held to a higher moral standard?
     
  7. There is a delicate balance between employees taking the piss and the employers doing the same. When the financial crises kicked in the company I work for came before the unions and said we can't afford a pay rise. Fair enough, the unions said fine and we just sucked it up. The company then proceeded to announce bumper profits on a company wide webcast about two months later.