Fuckwit Employers who take advantage...

of naive or young employees!
My son was just laid off from his job as a full time insulator with no termination notice. When I asked him if he will be getting his termination pay he said they didn’t offer any. This completely contravenes the law here and have done this to a bunch of other guys for whom this was their first “serious” job.
I really despise assholes like his boss who try to fuck over their employees to save a buck, doubly so when they have gotten away with it on others.

We’ll be going to the Alberta Labour Board to see what the fallout of this will be, and I’ve recommended to the boy to tell everyone else who was in the same boat to do the same. Fucking Oil Patch Fucks!

Maybe they don’t have to:


Yeah, that was going to be my question too.

Admittedly, i’m not an expert, but it seems to me that working as an insulator might qualify as being part of the construction industry.

Rules are a little different for construction than other professions in Alberta. Certainly check with the labour board though, I’ve seen lots of practices that I know where in violation.

The construction industry here has plenty of morally corrupt cheats.

My first job was in an office where people were entitled to overtime. Unfortunately, my boss told me that she didn’t believe in overtime, and that she thought people should just work until their work was done. I sometimes worked 14 hours days, with no additional compensation. When I finally quit, I got no severance – I’m not even sure if I got my final paycheck. I was young and naive, and so glad to be out of there that I didn’t even think about the money I was owed.

I agree 100% with the pitting of bosses who take advantage of inexperienced employees to pull this kind of stuff.

Forget it, Jake. It’s Albertatown.

The oil and construction industries have essentially written the labour laws in this province for the past 40 years, thanks to consecutive conservative governments.

Ah crap. A perfectly good pit rant gone to waste. It would seem insulators are in fact “construction” so no termination pay/notification. That blows goats in a completely different way.
L’il spruce (funny since he’s 6’7") is applying for EI today and starting his High School upgrades to work toward an B.Ed. Maybe there will be some good out of this after all.

I hope L’ll Spruce isn’t living in Edmonton! (referring to the fact that Edmonton doesn’t get to take part in the new EI adjustments)

200% agreement here.

My first real job was at a fast food restaurant. If you were one of the “closers” (final cleanup after the store was closed), you were given an hour to do your work and then had to clock out. If you weren’t done, you had to stay and work off the clock.

I didn’t know any better.

This. So much this. I have done the books for an Alberta based oilfield company. The oilfield employee regulations are actually even worse than the construction ones.

What I would recommend is checking the code on your sons’ record of employment for the reason for dismissal. If it says A (shortage of work) you’re golden for EI. If it says E (quit) or M (dismissed) than your son will have a much harder time getting an EI claim. I have seen people who where “laid-off” who later found out that according to their RoE they had been fired and thus had problems getting EI. The EI people take those codes seriously, so most employers will change the code if someone complains rather than risk an audit. Employers have five days to get the RoE to employees, so push if you don’t have it by then.

As a more general agreement, there is a special place in hell for employers who take advantage of inexperienced employees.

I still remember getting fired from my second job for pointing out my employer was violating the law and refusing to go along. I showed up the next morning with a big sign that he was breaking the law and started protesting in front of the business. By noon, I had a fat severance check in exchange for signing a “shut-the-fuck-up” agreement. Which was great … until I started looking for another job and found out that my little stunt had poisoned the well a bit. I did end up landing on my feet, but in retrospect it wasn’t really worth it.

I can’t believe companies still get away with that. I used to work for a very large retailer with thousands of stores, and if we caught anyone working off the clock, both they and their manager could be (and usually were) terminated. It’s a major violation of employment law.

The problem is that with thousands of stores, the only way you’re going to find out about some of this stuff is if someone complains, and the inexperienced employees don’t know enough to complain. My boss told me that she didn’t believe in paying overtime, so I worked overtime without pay. Now, of course I would go to HR and raise a stink, but back then I thought it was just the way things were.

Fast food restaurants are generally run as franchises. I’m not sure how much the head office gets involved in labor practices.

Why would you terminate the employee, who was probably only working off the clock because his manager told him to?

Cold Lake, so dodged that one. Mithrander, they said it was lack of work but we’ll see what his ROE says when he gets it. Of course, they have the option to send it directly to EI as an electronic document. I’m hoping they don’t try to screw him over more.

I was working at a Radio Shack about 10 years ago as a second job for toy money and the owner decided that we had to do the clean up after the mall closed, for no pay. Since I didn’t really care if I got fired, I told him in no uncertain terms that either he paid for the time I was there or the clean up got done before the store shut for the day and I was out the door after close. He blustered but gave in, so we cleaned up before shop close. If we had a customer at close, we dealt with them first.

The employee has to sign off on the employee handbook and take a computer-based class when they are hired and each year thereafter, which are very clear about the seriousness of working off the clock and the recourse employees have if they are asked to do so. The company knew that an FLSA lawsuit, especially if widespread violations were found, could easily run into millions of dollars.

Having said that, it didn’t automatically result in termination. Incidents were handled on a case-by-case basis. It would have to be pretty egregious to result in the employee’s termination for a first offense. Managers might be given a second chance in the case of an honest mistake, but not if they were trying to cheat the employee or company.

But yes, with thousands of stores, I’m sure it happened sometimes without us finding out. But it would be a risk for the manager responsible.

If they electronically submit his RoE, you can view it here.


And for any non-Canadian dopers wondering, the only reason for an employer to mis-classify is to be a dick or if they are incompetent. There is no financial penalty to business in Canada to have an employee go on EI. The entire system is funded by a flat rate deduction from employees, matched 140% by the employer. Unlike worker’s comp, having multiple claims does not drive up the rate. It still happens though, which is why I mentioned it.

Best of luck to your son. It’s a rough time to be unemployed in this part of the country.

What kind of business was it, and how old were you?

From the context of her tenure as a Doper, I suspect that Mamma Zappa’s first job was long enough ago to not really count towards “still” anything at all.

This is not to say that there aren’t still employers who try, with varying degrees of success, to get away with ignoring labor laws.