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What you Need to Know About General Defense for Employees?

The general defense for employees is designed to protect workers in their workplace. As an employee, you need to be aware of your rights in order to help you receive fair treatment and compensations that you deserve.

General Protection

Generally, the defense for employees includes protection to form or join associations. No matter what the cause you are fighting for, your employer cannot stop you from joining any government or private organizations. In addition to that, the employment law protects you from any form of discrimination in your workplace. You are entitled to adequate relief if you have been discriminated or if you received unfair treatment.

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An employer cannot take any untoward action against the employee whose rights have been violated. The following are types of adverse actions that might be taken against employees:

1. Improper dismissal from work
2. Not giving the employee his/her legal entitlements
3. Altering the employee’s job description to his/her disadvantage
4. Treating the employee differently from other employees
5. Not hiring potential employee
6. Providing the employee a set of rules and regulations or terms and conditions that are entirely different from the ones offered to other employees.

Inside Workplace

An employee is entitled to receive awards and compensations from an employer. He is also entitled to receive a responsibility according to his job description. If another employee needed to file a lawsuit against the company management, the employee has the liberty to support him. Lastly, the general defense for employees implies that an employee can file a complaint any time his employee rights have been violated.

Industrial Activities

An employer must never take harsh actions against an employee who decided to engage in any industrial activities such as participating in a union.
Other industrial activities that employees are free to join are as follows:

1. Applying or declining membership in an industrial association such as employer association a0nd union
2. Representing someone’s or a group’s claims or views regarding company issues
3. Taking a part in any company activity
4. Refusing or declining to be a part of any company activity

Discrimination

As mentioned earlier, employees are entitled to receive fair treatment and free from discrimination. Moreover, an employee cannot take any harsh action against someone because of his personal attributes including:

a. Color
b. Race
c. Sex
d. Sexual orientation
e. Mental or physical disability
f. Age
g. Marital Status
h. Family responsibilities
i. Pregnancy
j. Political opinion
k. Religion
l. Social origin
m. National extraction

To Whom Does the Protection Applies

The general defense laws can be applied to both employees and potential employees. That means that once you entered a certain company and implemented for a particular job, then you are already covered by the general defense law for employees. No one has the right to dismiss you for no apparent reason.
If you want to learn more about the general defense for employees, you may check with an attorney and inquire about your concerns.

Who is An Abusive Client?

A client is a person to whom the service provider works or provides his service, for a fixed period or a certain project.

A service provider deals with many clients in the course of his business. And, there is always a possibility that one or a few of those clients may be abusive, but the service providers could not identify or distinguish them from the good customers.

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Here are some tips on how to identify if a client is abusive:

1. He is disrespectful.

A client can be disrespectful in many ways. He may disrespect the service provider by questioning his or his personnel’s integrity. For example, when the service provider commits a small mistake, the client calls him names or makes snide remarks.

A client can also be disrespectful if he compares the service provider’s expertise to a person who is obviously not an expert. For example, when a customer compares a website created by the designer to the work of his six-year-old son. He is also disrespectful if he regularly makes it difficult for you to get paid for the job (e.g. being always late in payment, or paying you less than the agreed upon rate).

Another disrespectful client is one who treats the expert as his personnel. This happens when the customer insists on his ideas and expect the expert to work with it, despite the vulnerability or the impossibility of his ideas. It may also happen when the client consistently orders the service provider to do what the latter already knows, such as dipping the brush in the paint before painting the walls.

2. He is unreasonable.

When the client declines the services or the work rendered by the service provider without giving any reason, he may already be abusing the supplier.

It is definitely an abuse if he decided to change his preferences during the presentation or after the work was done and refuses to pay for the extra costs or services. For example, if you are a florist and the client suddenly decided to change the pink flowers into yellow flowers, but refuses to pay for the pink flowers, that is unreasonable.

A client also becomes unreasonable when he gives an impossible deadline, such as ordering a sculptor to finish ten life-size statues in two days.

Another red flag is when he tries to ask you to do tasks as a “favor” – that is, without intending to pay you or setting up a payment arrangement because he thinks that he has a right to ask you a work-related favor for free.

3. He is neglectful or is always unreachable.

A client, who is neglectful or unreachable, may not be considered as abusive, outright, if he pays his deposit or retainer fees. If he does not pay a deposit or a retainer fee but continues to neglect the project he entrusted to the service provider, then he is becoming an abusive client.

Some may say that no harm was done because the service provider did not end up working anyway. However, the fact that the client continuously messed up the schedule and affect the efficiency of the service provider, an abuse was already committed.

4. He refuses to pay the fees.

If the client habitually fails or refuses to pay the fees, he is deemed to be abusing the service provider.

Upon engaging the services of the provider, the client is already aware that he needs to pay the fees after a phase was accomplished or after the project was materialized. His unreasonable refusal to pay is an obvious abuse of the time and effort of the service provider.

A Brief Discussion on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

Sexual harassment is prevalent in many workplaces all over the world and has a profound impact on the lives of both men and women. Sexual harassment is considered an unwelcome behavior as the affected party can feel humiliated, intimidated or offended. Sexual harassment in the workplace ranges from derogatory verbal abuse to unwanted sexual advances and assault to rape. Any sexual harassment incident inside the premises of the workplace and any work-related events.

According to the studies conducted by the law firm Slater & Gordon, one out of six women have had colleagues who look down their dress while half of the women received unwanted sexual remarks regarding their breasts. Also, it was revealed that one out of eight women left their jobs due to sexual harassment from colleagues because it made feel uncomfortable.

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Sexual Harassment Knows No Gender

Sexual harassment is not limited to women as it is considered as a gender-neutral offense. Just like women, men are also on the receiving end of sexual advances. However, statistics shows that the majority of sexual harassment claims and charges are filed by women claiming that their male colleagues sexually harassed them. The same can also be said to people of the third sex as they are also subjected to sexual harassment by their colleagues.

What Employees Need to Do

If you are an employee and find yourself being a target of sexual harassment in the workplace by your colleagues, tell the person directly that his or her actions offend you. If the harassment does not end despite your plea, ask the person to stop — and put it in writing. Report the person to your supervisor in writing if the harassment does not stop. You also need to keep a duplicate of the written communication just in case you will need it in the future.

If you belong to a union, you can also file a formal grievance so that a shop steward or any official of the union can help you out with the grievance process. Then, you will need to acquire a copy of your collective bargaining agreement to determine if it addresses that problems you are going through. Remember that if you make use of your union’s grievance procedure, you will still need to file a complaint of discrimination with a government agency before filing any sexual harassment lawsuit in federal or state court.

What Employers Can Do

Employers can also adapt several precautionary measures to reduce or eliminate sexual harassment in their company. As an employer, you can implement a clear sexual harassment policy to lessen the risk of sexual harassment in your workplace. You can include a sexual harassment policy in your employee handbook that deliberately discuss the definition of sexual harassment as well as the disciplinary action and proper protocol involved.

Final Thoughts

Sexual harassment is a serious offense and should not be tolerated. You can refer to your state’s law regarding sexual harassment in the workplace to know more about what you can do in case it happens to you. You can also get in touch with your lawyer or any legal organization for proper advice regarding the matter.

The Basic Things to Know on What is a Hostile Work Environment

Some employees think that unpleasant workplaces, rudeness, or lack of privileges, benefits, and recognition are forms of hostility in the workplace. This can be true, but it is also important to note that hostility needs to meet some legal criteria. So what is a hostile work environment?

Any behavior can constitute hostility, but legally speaking, hostile work environment is any action caused by unwelcome behavior, conduct, or communication in the workplace in the form of discrimination and harassment towards one or more employees. It can lead to uneasiness in one’s job and doing the work expectations impossible.

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This definition filters out little annoyances from true incidents of hostility. Co-workers who speak loudly, or people who snap and crack their knuckles and gums may be demonstrating inappropriate and rude behavior, but is not qualified to be a hostile environment. On the contrary, employees who pass around sexually explicit jokes and images, with the intent to imply sexual advances or intimidation, are guilty of harassment, which is a valid case of creating a hostile workplace.

There are also other factors that define what a hostile work environment is. This is to distinguish further casual joking from hostility. In a hostile workplace, the conduct must be intentional, recurring, severe, pervasive, and interferes with the work environment and employee performance. An investigating body will be assigned to assess and review the situation to know if a conduct falls under these factors of hostility. The investigating body can be external from the workplace, but can also be a team of human resource and legal experts provided by the company. Usually, a legal complaint against discrimination and hostility becomes stronger if the victim already went through the company policies on discrimination to no avail.

The issues and after effects of claims on hostility are complex and should not be ignored. Relevant laws recognize this importance and provide protection to both victims and witnesses. Depending on the degree of hostility, the court will order several grants in favor of the victim once proven. There are several cases of hostility and harassment in the past where the court has ordered companies to pay thousands and even millions of dollars to the victim.

Hostility in work environment begins with improper and discriminatory behavior. Companies often have their internal policies and resolution procedures of hostility and conflicts. Providing a hostile and discriminatory environment to employees who practice a different religion and who belong to another race, color, or gender is illegal. Under the law, companies are required to provide their employees with an environment that is free from discrimination.

Discrimination and sexual harassment often constitute a hostile work environment. However, there are other areas where hostility can arise. An example of this is in retaliation. Retaliation is a behavior that discourage other employees from filing a complaint against someone or against the company. When an employee filed a complaint, retaliation and hostility can arise when the company willfully imposes behavior to pressure or to discourage future complaints from other employees.

Similarly, hostility can happen from constructive discharge and other contract-related matters. These include behaviors that force an employee to quit. Hostility arises from discharge issues because of several reasons, including the refusal of the company to provide rightful benefits to employees. More often than not, these different areas of hostility overlap and are closely related to each other.

Here are some factors believed to cause hostility in the workplace.

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Bad management

Hostility can arise if the management fails to guide the subordinates and create an environment of respect. Company policies and procedures should also be carried out to foster a positive workplace. Continuous failure of managers to mediate on conflicts often result to legal implications against the company.

Poor training and undefined expectations

Employees with poor training on proper workplace behavior and etiquette can be a disaster. Poor understanding of an improper behavior leads to bad attitudes being unchecked and left uncorrected. Similarly, employees with poor understanding of the different job responsibilities due to undefined expectations can result in hostility. For example, an employee who does not fully understand the responsibilities of his co-employees might get mad, blame, and induce hostility when the co-employee did not act on something that is out of his responsibilities. Positions in an organization must be properly trained, and expectations are defined, because undefined parameters might result in conflicts and hostility.

Absence of policies and conflict resolution

Without policies, employees will not have an objective basis and basic guidelines on what constitute proper and improper behavior. These policies not only define the protective measures to employees against hostility but also provide corrective and preventive measures to avoid similar incidents from happening again.