The vast majority of adults work, and as such, they’re liable to spend a good deal of their waking life in a workplace environment in which they’re in a mutual contractual relationship with their employer. You provide your labour, and they provide certain rights and benefits, including that all-important wage packet. It’s surprising that so many people in the UK are unaware of their rights in the workplace, and neglect to claim them when they’re mishandled, mistreated or mismanaged. This guide aims to emphasise your workplace rights, ensuring you’re not exploited in your working life.
Time Off and Holidays
Stipulated in your contract but also UK employment law, there is a minimum number of days that you’re legally entitled to take a paid holiday during your period of permanent employment. This figure is confused when you enter into the gig economy or temporary employment, but it’s in these cases that it’s particularly important to be aware of your rights. You’re entitled to a legal allowance of time off to spend on holiday or with your family – so make sure you’re abreast of the rules to make the most of your right to holidays.
When you’re at work, you’re legally in the hands of your employer. This means that any injury you sustain in the workplace is likely to be due to the negligence of your employer. They’re legally required to observe strict health and safety rules to keep you safe and healthy in your role – yet sometimes these are overlooked. If you do sustain an injury while in the workplace, talk to the-compensation-experts.co.uk to understand your rights around compensation for your losses – something that your company will be likely legally obliged to provide.
Despite the leaps and bounds taken in recent decades to increase workplace security for minorities and oppressed groups, there is still a long way to go before workplace discrimination is truly put to bed. It’s sometimes difficult to know when you’re being discriminated against, but it’s important nonetheless to be cognizant of your rights in this area, so you know when you’re being treated illegally. Joining a union, or speaking with your HR department, should help you understand when to take action if you feel you’re being discriminated against for any one of many reasons.
Overtime and Hours
As well as holidays from work, you’re also allowed to take on more work, should you wish. This can be to boost your salary for a given month or simply to help pull together to finish a project in time. Sometimes, though, you’re compelled to work overtime frequently without extra pay and warning – disrupting your leisure time and your life outside of work. Remember your employment rights here, too – that you’re only obliged to work your contracted hours, and that there are a variety of rules in place to prevent employers from overexerting their workforce for their gain. If in doubt, speak to HR, your union, or look up your rights online or in your employment contract.
These points will help you understand and overcome infringements of your rights while at the workplace, protecting you from mistreatment and harm while at work.