As an employee, you have certain rights that an employer may not violate, at least not without consequences. When most individuals think of work-related injuries, they imagine an accident on a factory floor or a slip-and-fall accident in an unsafe workspace. However, employers often pressure workers to continue to perform their jobs in unsafe conditions, and these employers may face significant legal action for doing so.
Many of us face struggles with work in light of the current viral outbreak, and in many cases, individuals who might otherwise complain about work conditions are simply glad to have a job. While it is important to remain grateful for our blessings, difficult times do not completely remove the obligations of employers to employees.
If you suspect that your employer violated your rights to a safe workplace, you may have grounds to file a claim and seek damages. Many factors go into this decision, so it is important to gather as much evidence as possible and review the acts of your claim carefully as you build it. A strong claim helps keeps your rights secure while you seek fair compensation for your losses and suffering.
Are you in an unsafe workspace?
Recently, many employers have faced difficult decisions surrounding how to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. Inevitably, some employers’ actions focused more on protecting their own interests above the welfare of their employees.
It is important to understand the complexity of these conflicts. Often, employers see that they only have undesirable options, and end up choosing the least harmful option available. Simply disagreeing with your employer’s actions in a difficult situation is likely not grounds to file a claim.
However, some employers took actions that directly placed their employees in the path of physical harm, out of negligence or disinterest in employee welfare. Over time, these actions may have disastrous consequences, and some employers may face significant liability.
Remaining safe and continuing to work during a time of great economic uncertainty is a delicate balance, but far too often workers simply do not feel that they have the power to stand up for their own safety and the well-being of others. Many employees comply with unsafe direction from leadership because they worry that objecting may cost them their job.
While we all work to lessen the impact of the coronavirus epidemic, it is important to remember that employee protections are not only for times of convenience. In fact, these protections may help keep employees safe in times when an employer has other concerns that may leave employees in unsafe environments, using unsafe practices.
Protecting yourself begins today
If you believe that your employer violated your rights by failing to provide a safe workspace, it is wise to document as much as you can and begin reviewing the evidence as you build your claim. Building a strong claim helps ensure that your rights and interests remain secure, both in good times and in difficult seasons.