Thursday, July 30, 2015

FIRE AT WILL STATES - OP ED ARTICLE



Fire At Will States
By
Terri DelCampo

There’s a petition going around online to have fire-at-will states abolished.  I signed it.  Many people have, and will, because it should be unconstitutional to walk up to an employee and destroy their life on a whim. 

In Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Nebraska, New York, Rhode Island, Texas and Florida this is exactly what can, and believe me, does, happen. 

Another set of states has “implied contracts” with their employees that protect from the fire-at-will you’re out of here threat:  Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas and Virginia.  But this is “implied,” which, when your job is on the line, is an incredibly vague term. 

My landlord went to work on a Friday morning, by Friday afternoon he was packing up his personal belongings from his desk. He was told he wasn’t producing up to quota.  There was no previous warning, verbal or written.  No second chance.  Nothing.  This happened early in August.  It’s December and he still isn’t working, not for lack of effort, but because there are no jobs out there that pay even as much as his unemployment, which is a fraction of his normal pay, and falls well short of paying his bills. 

There is a district manager in the national drug store chain where I work.  Every time there’s any kind of conference or meeting he spouts the same threat:  “I’m it.  I’m the one in charge.  I don’t like you, you’re out of here!” 

This man would ‘strut around like a peacock’ according to a co-worker, at every manager’s meeting, staff conference, or store inspection, and spout this kind of intimidating garbage.  And the worst part was that everyone present knew he could follow up on that and dismiss any or all of the employees, on the spot, at his whim. 

Can you imagine what that does to morale?  Especially to employees who were already underpaid, who’d had their hours cut back to30 hours a week, who were working understaffed and doing the very best that they could?  Also knowing that if they are fired the chances of getting another job before serious financial damage occurred was next to nil? 

Threats looming from management personnel who are secure in their positions and making more money than the employees they threaten to throw to the wolves are abominable. 

It’s surprising that the Fire-At-Will status hasn’t been termed unconstitutional and abolished.  Even crooked politicians get the impeachment process.