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Mandatory to work on a holiday? Is this legal? New York

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  • Mandatory to work on a holiday? Is this legal? New York

    My Employer has just sent an e-mail out saying it will be MANDATORY to work on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr's birthday (January 21st) for a minimum of 4 hours. We'll be getting holiday pay (time and 1/2) but, is this legal??

  • #2
    Yes. If you work in the private sector, your employer doesn't have to observe any holidays at all nor do they have to pay you overtime for working on that day. If your employer is paying you time and a-half, they're being generous.

    FYI, lots of employers don't observe MLK day as a holiday.

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    • #3
      Yes. With very few exceptions (such as airline pilots, long haul truck drivers, minor children employees), most employers can make most employees work pretty much any hours that the employer wants.
      "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
      Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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      • #4
        There is NO state where any private employer is EVER required by law to EVER give any employee any holiday off.

        Unless you work for the government or the banking industry which is required to follow Federal work schedules, holidays are COMPLETELY at the discretion of the employer.

        If you're getting premium time to work on the holiday, you are getting more than the law requires.
        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
          I do work for a bank, but not at a branch. Does that make a difference?

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          • #6
            Out of the ten Federal holidays we do not observe MLK Day or Columbus Day.

            We do pay a premium (time and a half) for work on the other eight, but are not legally required to do so.

            If someone wants a particular day off, with or without pay, they can schedule it in advance but if we don't have enough folks to work the shifts that we MUST cover (or have upset customers), then some requests may get turned down.

            If someone simply refuses to work when they are scheduled, not a major problem. They won't work that day or any other day, ever again, at least not for us.
            Senior Professional in Human Resources and Certified Staffing Professional with over 30 years experience. Any advice provided is based upon experience and education, but does not constitute legal advice.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by ScottB View Post

              If someone simply refuses to work when they are scheduled, not a major problem. They won't work that day or any other day, ever again, at least not for us.
              I'm cracking up! Good one, Scott.

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