Need the scoop on benefits, employment law, worker rights, freelance contracts, immigration visas and more -- you’ve found the right spot. Chances are, that as a high-tech worker, you may not spend a lot of time focusing on workers' rights. You keep your skills up, you learn the latest technologies, and so far you've always been well-compensated and treated fairly.
Or maybe you've run into problems.
As high-tech moves from being an infant industry to a mature one, and as the initial dot-com boom becomes a memory, high-tech employers increasingly focus on the bottom line. That translates into pressure on workers -- pressure to accept lower wages and longer hours and not to rock the boat. Maybe your personal argument with a manager has been transformed into a “business issue”. Maybe you like the idea of a union to help balance the odds in case you do run into an issue, but you're nervous about what will happen if your manager finds out. Or maybe you've been laid off and you're afraid your ex-employer or contract agency will dispute your unemployment claim.
As a worker, you have rights that are protected by law. You may have more rights than you think. They include:
- The right to organize into a union.
- The right to unemployment compensation, even in some cases when your employer disputes it.
- The right to negotiate the terms of an agency contract.
- The right to discuss how much you make with co-workers.
- The right to overtime for hourly work, with some exceptions that are important to high-tech workers.
- The right not to be discriminated against on the basis of age, sex, race or handicap.
- The right to a workplace free of sexual harassment.
- The right to take up to 12 weeks of medical leave each year, depending on what type of employer you work for, and the right not to be penalized for missing work in such cases.
- The right to safe working conditions.
Last Updated ( Monday, 20 April 2009 05:38 )