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Meal Breaks Pennsylvania

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  • Meal Breaks Pennsylvania

    I work at a hospital during the 11-7 shift. Until recently, my employer, used to pay us 8 1/2 hours for 8 hours worked. I am being told that this was because many years ago the hospital was fined for not providing this shift a place to go and have break time. That the remaining shifts,7-3 and 3-11, have cafeteria hours to go and purchase their lunch at a discounted rate.

    Recently, the hospital has changed this policy. We are now required to report to work at 10:45 PM and stay until 7:15 AM or later and they are witholding 1/2 hour from our pay as a "meal break". Mind you that the cafeteria is still not available to us. The administrators involved in changing this policy state that they know 11-7 shift usually orders meals out from local businesses and/or brings their lunch in from home.

    I am trying to find out if there is such a law protecting us from this unfair change. When in reality night shift does not always get to order out or bring in their lunch. I think we should be entitled to the same services of the other shifts, such as the cafeteria being open, serving warm meals at a discounted rate. When this was asked of the administrators, their statement was "there are machines in the basement" (They were refering to the snack and soda machines that are out of order more than they work.) So if anyone can provide me with information to Pennsylvania's laws and how I can get a hold of it. It would be greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by Angelgrace530; 07-18-2006, 06:32 AM.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Angelgrace530
    I work at a hospital during the 11-7 shift. Until recently, my employer, used to pay us 8 1/2 hours for 8 hours worked. I am being told that this was because many years ago the hospital was fined for not providing this shift a place to go and have break time. That the remaining shifts,7-3 and 3-11, have cafeteria hours to go and purchase their lunch at a discounted rate.

    Recently, the hospital has changed this policy. We are now required to report to work at 10:45 PM and stay until 7:15 AM or later and they are witholding 1/2 hour from our pay as a "meal break". Mind you that the cafeteria is still not available to us. The administrators involved in changing this policy state that they know 11-7 shift usually orders meals out from local businesses and/or brings their lunch in from home.

    I am trying to find out if there is such a law protecting us from this unfair change. When in reality night shift does not always get to order out or bring in their lunch. I think we should be entitled to the same services of the other shifts, such as the cafeteria being open, serving warm meals at a discounted rate. When this was asked of the administrators, their statement was "there are machines in the basement" (They were refering to the snack and soda machines that are out of order more than they work.) So if anyone can provide me with information to Pennsylvania's laws and how I can get a hold of it. It would be greatly appreciated.
    Under Penn law: Pennsylvania employers are required to provide break periods of at least 30 minutes for minors ages 14 through 17 who work five or more consecutive hours. Employers are not required to give breaks for employees 18 and over. If your employer allows breaks, and they last less than 20 minutes, you must be paid for the break. If your employer allows meal periods, the employer is not required to pay you for your meal period if you do not work during your meal period and it lasts more than 20 minutes.
    Somedays you're the windshield and somedays you're the bug.

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    • #3
      I work at a hospital during the 11-7 shift. Until recently, my employer, used to pay us 8 1/2 hours for 8 hours worked. I am being told that this was because many years ago the hospital was fined for not providing this shift a place to go and have break time. That the remaining shifts,7-3 and 3-11, have cafeteria hours to go and purchase their lunch at a discounted rate.

      Recently, the hospital has changed this policy. We are now required to report to work at 10:45 PM and stay until 7:15 AM or later and they are witholding 1/2 hour from our pay as a "meal break". Mind you that the cafeteria is still not available to us. The administrators involved in changing this policy state that they know 11-7 shift usually orders meals out from local businesses and/or brings their lunch in from home.

      I am trying to find out if there is such a law protecting us from this unfair change. When in reality night shift does not always get to order out or bring in their lunch. I think we should be entitled to the same services of the other shifts, such as the cafeteria being open, serving warm meals at a discounted rate. When this was asked of the administrators, their statement was "there are machines in the basement" (They were refering to the snack and soda machines that are out of order more than they work.) So if anyone can provide me with information to Pennsylvania's laws and how I can get a hold of it. It would be greatly appreciated.[/QUOTE]

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      • #4
        There is no law prohibiting them from changing your hours. There is no law requiring them to open the cafeteria for you. There is a law prohibiting them from deducting a meal break if you did not take one; however, there is no law prohibiting them from disciplining or firing you if they want you to take one and you do not. So if they want you to take a half hour meal break, you take a half hour meal break, whether the cafeteria is open or not.
        The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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        • #5
          Thank you

          Thank you for your replies. The information will clear things up for myself and my peers.

          P.S. Great Website!

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