at home with ann


Posted on: 20 November 2009

I am incensed and I owe a good good friend an apology – I lost my rag, not with him, but with the system.     We have discussed it a million times and last night was no exception – he wanted to drop the subject, but I wouldn’t let it go because I find it so outrageous and I’m sorry that I give him a hard time and I’m sorry he has to put up with this – and I know he’s not alone, so this is for everyone.  

I thought slavery had been abolished, but when an employee has no rights, no contract, is paid peanuts and can be let go at a moment’s notice, it does make me wonder.      This friend worked for over eight years, full time for a company and was made redundant at the outset of the recession over a year ago.   The company is still in business and he was given zilch, no redundancy pay, not one single cent – why, because where he lives the employee has no contract and no rights.    My country is not perfect  but unless a company goes under and the employee becomes a creditor, there are statutory payments they have to make when letting someone go.    Since losing that job  and being unemployed for a while, he is now working for a supermarket under the same conditions, no contract, no rights.

I am sure that every supermarket employee in this country has a signed contract, proper annual leave entitlement, even in their first year, sick pay and an element of security as long as they fulfil their contractual obligations and the company is still trading.   I would like to name and shame the American supermarket chain my friend busts a gut for, but I don’t want to do anything that would jeopardise him.   Instead I shall rant here and hope I express it better in verse. 


this is the promised land
the golden medina
where the grass is greener

in this ‘new’ land
its declaration vows
the pursuit of happiness for every man
life and liberty and equality

if you’re the employer
not the employee!
what hypocrisy!

“In G-d We Trust”
the motto of this State
that’s not enough when
the ethos means

no business ethics
no rights
no contracts
no leave

they can dismiss you as they please
no such thing as loyalty
no pat on the back, a job well done
you’re an asset to the company

instead – you’re a liability
dispensable, expendable
to hell with security
if you don’t like it, tough

there’s always another
to take your place
in the land of the free
the United States


8 Responses to "Injustice"

Yep, it sucks working in America. It’s all about profit and employees are considered liabilities.

howling, there’s nothing wrong with profit – it’s the treatment of staff – the carrot and the stick syndrome – people work much better given incentives and praise than threats and bad feeling

It’s a disgrace. If there hadn’t been good legislation in place, and if I hadn’t had a union working for me, I would now be penniless and homeless after I was made redundant in the start of 2005. Instead, I have a pension to keep me going, my lump sum (two of them, actually, one for the redundancy payment, one with the pension) helped me reduce my outgoings so I only have to work part time.

The way people are treated appals me.

val, i get so upset for him – it is absolutely disgraceful – but then so is their healthcare – can you imagine how it would have been for you there – absolutely disgraceful!

I bet he works for Walmart, a store I absolutely will not patronize no matter how broke we are. Talk about everything that is wrong with America.

Your friend, if he was laid off, should be able to get unemployment, not that it pays well, esp. if you weren’t making any $ to begin with.

But yeah, that’s what companies are doing. Look at what happened to Brian. They got 30 days of work out of him and canned his ass. The place where he worked has a huge turnover. People seem to be hired and fired w/in their 90 day probation period so that the company never has to invest any real money into benefits. They get all the work done and never have to pony up the benefits. It sickens me.

jojo, actually it’s not walmart, but it’s still a big group. i guess i didn’t make it clear – he worked for 8 yrs for another company with no contract, was made redundant then found the job with the supermarket, again no contract, no rights, and their terms are unreasonable.

bridgitte, my dil, was having the same problem in Israel, mostly working for Americans – they would take her on as an intern to show her the ropes and pay either nothing or just her out of pocket expenses and then when it came to the real thing there was always an excuse, because there would always be a queue of people to do the work and they’d never have to pay ’em

Injustices like this make me SO mad! Employment law in this country isn’t perfect but at least there is some.

akelamalu, in this country it’s mostly the employee who wins out against an employer – even when the employer is right, the employee usually walks away with something

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the loves of my life

at the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet ~~~ plato

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from long ago

in case I forget what day of the week it is

November 2009
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