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NEED HELP!!!! Pennsylvania

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  • NEED HELP!!!! Pennsylvania

    hey folks, my work recently passed a smoking ban. Everything is going fine, surprisingly the smokers dont mind. they have been going across the street at break time to smoke as they were told.

    Now here comes the fun part, today the boss has just told us that "we are not allowed to leave the building when we are on break" because we dont punch out for break we are still on the clock or w/e. and than he goes as far to say that he doesnt want the smokers crossing the street because if they get hit by a car or slip and fall on the ice they can make a claim for workers compensation.

    Okay most of the employees are in their 50's or older and im sure they know how to cross the road. And as far as i know as long as they are on break and not actually doing nething work related at the time o' the accident they cant claim.

    So i really need an answer for my fellow union members and the smokers cuz i dont know what to tell them or where to begin with this mess. Is this a case o' discrimination on the smokers behalf? and when its break time are they allowed to leave the building to smoke like they were asked prior to this?

    Your guys help will be greatly appreciated if you's need nemore details feel free to ask. thank you
    Last edited by Behemith; 09-16-2009, 07:57 PM.

  • #2
    Whether the rule requiring employees to stay on property is motivated by legal liabilities or by a desire to keep employees from smoking on their breaks is irrelevant - either way, it's legal in your state, unless something in your union contract says otherwise.


    • #3

      Nothing in the contract says anything about smoking and not smoking. the boss like to play god and if you refuse his wishes or challenge his ruleing you will be fired.

      i would really hate to see some employees fired over this and like i said i dont know whats right or wrong and i hate being so helpless to my coworkers.

      And how about the guys leaveing the premisis for break? can any1 help me with that. the smokers even said that they would punch out for break and the boss man said they are not allowed, they are prisoners in a sense and is that violating their rights to a break i mean i dont see this stuff happening anywhere else where i can reference an answer to their problems, i really need some legit information for the people paying union dues. thank you again for any help
      Last edited by Behemith; 09-16-2009, 08:27 PM.


      • #4
        Breaks aren't even required by law for adults in your state though your employer can allow them or they can be required per your union contract.

        There is no law that if your employer does allow breaks, that employees be allowed to leave the premises unless your union contract allows this.
        Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

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        • #5
          so if they leave they can be fired is what your sayin? so as far as you guys know no1 is haveing their rites violated and thats tht? thats all the ifo i needed thank you very much for the help and boy my windows are gonna get smashed for this lol


          • #6
            That's exactly what Betty3 is saying. Just because an employee is a smoker, the employer doesn't have to give them any special treatment. If the rule is that you can't leave the premises on your paid break, then that's the rule and it is legal.
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