While we all know that students should master excellent reading, analysis, strategic thinking, and writing skills, it is not the only thing they ought to know! The talk here is about the workplace rights that constitute an important part of life. Unfortunately, far not everyone knows where to start and rarely learns about the best ways to protect his or her legal rights.
Depending on employment and labor laws in your state (federal and state legislation), you can and should explore your rights as a student in the United States to protect yourself. Once you learn your workplace rights, you will be able to address issues like leave laws, wage and hour rules, workplace payments, issues like bullying, social and gender discrimination, and more. It is one of those vital aspects that can help you protect yourself, both physically and mentally.
Workplace Rights Every Student Should Know
The majority of students these days face the challenge of rising college costs, which is only increasing the necessity of getting employed to manage the studies and daily needs of life. It includes spending money for rent, food, logistics, payment for books, and more. While we have a freelancer market with relevant rules and even certain work on campus, it is not always a bed of roses and can easily become quite confusing and challenging. Most college and high-school students will not dare to ask questions when in doubt, yet they should not define themselves as something less than a classic employed personality. As a matter of fact, student labor rights do not differ significantly from the general employment rights of an average individual looking for a job in the United States.
According to the State and Federal Employment Laws in the United States, students are covered by it regardless of their age and educational level. In other words, it makes it clear that you cannot be denied a job or discriminated against based on your age, gender, physical or mental disabilities, race, religion, or sexual orientation. The same is true for students with minors, pregnant learners, or individuals with a disability who have a right to accommodation and relevant workplace protection and support. If you face a situation where your rights are violated, make sure to contact the nearest lawyer or get in touch with your school’s legal advisor. If writing your case down poses a difficulty, you may hire an essay writer for assistance and ensure that all the facts and timings are noted correctly, with all the violation facts checked twice. Remember that the more accurate you are, the higher your chances for civil justice are!
As a rule, some students are employed on college or university campuses. They are further divided into undergraduate and graduate students, those who conduct research projects as a part of their work, and individuals who provide teaching assistance. In certain cases, one can work on campus to help earn more credits for the chosen degree. It means that you have to be eligible for a specific number of college hours or units before you can be employed.
Likewise, if you belong to graduate students or teach, your wages will be higher along with the provided medical assistance and scholarship funding. Still, your workplace conditions must be discussed in advance, as having to work over seventy or more hours per week is not acceptable for students on campus. After all, you are considered a school employee with all the benefits and work hours an average teacher enjoys.
Speaking of working on campus, which is often chosen by students, the Department of Labor makes it quite clear regarding the number of hours one can approach as a full-time student. As a student, you have a right for up to four hours per day and no more than twenty hours a week. As for the summer times, you can work up to 40 hours per week. Regarding the federal minimum wage, you have a right to $7.25 an hour.
This question is often asked by high school students and recent college graduates who appear in unpaid internships or situations where they become exploited. While young people have limited experience, it’s not the justification for lower wages or bad attitudes. It poses a necessity to make workplace rights teaching a part of the school’s curriculum where young people will learn how to stand for their rights and be ready to face the challenges that may occur in the workplace. It’s the precise case where knowledge protects and puts abusive employers back on track!
Mental Health Workplace Protection Aspect
Workplace rights must be made an obligatory part of high school studies because it is the best way to address the cases of abuse, age-based discrimination, and the problems related to mental harassment and violations of the workplace code. When we are dealing with the young people who explore summer jobs at the local cafes, lifeguarding at the beaches, or even babysitting, numerous violations take place. It does not matter whether we are dealing with summer jobs or post-graduation employment!
Most young people simply do not know what to expect, which brings in an element of anxiety and unknowingness. The trick is to know what is allowed and what represents a violation. While the minimum wage aspect can be easily traced to relevant legislation, the mental health protection aspect is often left in a vague state. According to federal law in the United States, students that go through mental health conditions and issues like PTSD or abuse cases have a right to be protected against discrimination or harassment of any kind that may occur in the workplace. This also includes confidentiality rights and legal protection in terms of accommodation. Now, turning to Hotline helpdesks for mental health support in your area might be helpful and are absolutely safe to consider once and when necessary!
Featured image by Unsplash