With Halloween over and the calendar flipped to a new month, holiday shopping soon will move into high gear. As the malls and parking lots fill with customers eager to cross off long shopping lists, Texas attorney Tony R. Bertolino has advice for those seasonal workers stocking the shelves and standing behind cash registers – know your rights as an employee.
To handle the rush of shoppers, large chain stores like Target and Toys R Us are planning to hire thousands of temporary workers and smaller businesses, while not on such a grand scale, will be looking to expand their employment numbers for a few months as well. With the intention being for most of these workers to be off the payroll by mid-January, there may be a tendency for employers to overlook or speed through those important steps of explaining safety procedures and workplace expectations. As a result, the chance for on-the-job injuries and instances of wrongful termination may increase.
Bertolino urges employees and bosses alike to be careful during this busy season. “The months of November and December see people working long hours carrying and unpacking boxes of merchandise, standing on their feet for extended periods of time and restocking high shelves,” he shares. “Often times, these employees do not have a long history with the company where they are now working and they may be afraid to speak up if they get hurt, or maybe they just don’t know where to turn.”