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Long Beach Employment Law Blog

Workers' compensation claims prevalent at Amazon warehouse

Amazon is one of the most popular companies across the world, and there are company warehouses all over the country, including in Fresno. This California warehouse location has a higher-than-normal rate of workers' compensation claims, which may indicate a need for improved safety at the facility. There were over 300 injuries reported between June 2018, when it opened, and May 2019.

Many workplace injuries are not life-threatening, thankfully, but they can have a serious impact on a person's ability to work. For example, one woman who worked in the warehouse suffered an injury to the wrist, but she is not able to return to any type of employment because she cannot lift anything heavier than a few pounds. She now depends on her husband's salary to support the family, along with certain types of government support.

Understanding your rights to meal and rest breaks

While everyone has days where they have plenty of energy and could work the whole day without taking any breaks, the majority of the time, you need your meal and rest breaks in order to get through your day. Even if your job isn't physically demanding, you will probably get hungry and have times when you need to step away from your work.

The problem is that your boss doesn't seem to be forthcoming with how your meal and rest breaks work. This may be a tactic to get you to work through them. If you know your rights when it comes to this issue, then you can take control over your day and get the breaks to which you are entitled under California law. You will also know when your boss can require you to work through a break since there are times when doing so does not violate your rights.

Positive resolution to lawsuits filed over sexual harassment

When a California employee experiences unwanted physical contact or verbal advances of a sexual nature in the workplace, that person has the right to speak up and take action. Recently, several plaintiffs in three different lawsuits against the California Democratic Party secured a reasonable settlement after they spoke out about sexual harassment they experienced. Multiple people claimed that party leader Eric Bauman touched them inappropriately. 

The claims against Bauman are disturbing, ranging from inappropriate comments and advances in a professional setting to forced sexual contact with at least one employee. The plaintiffs claimed that the CDP failed to protect them from a predatory authority figure. Bauman resigned from his position in 2018 after an investigation brought his actions and the CDP's lack of intervention to light.

Workers' compensation after fatal accidents in the workplace

It's hard to predict when and why work accidents happen, but there are safety regulations and rules in place to make things as safe as reasonably possible. Many fatal incidents in the workplace are the result of unpredictable factors and unexpected events, making it harder for employers to be vigilant regarding safety. After a death, a grieving California family has the right to pursue death benefits through a workers' compensation claim.

In 2018, reports indicate there was a 2% increase in the number of fatal work accidents. While there are occupations inherently more dangerous than others, such as firefighting, logging and construction, workplace fatalities can occur in virtually any type of job and involve any type of worker. While any fatality is tragic, there is evidence that workplace fatalities are statistical anomalies, and safety measures and training, when implemented properly, do work.

Are you facing retaliation for reporting workplace safety issues?

When you go to work, you have the right to a reasonable expectation of safety. This means that you have the right to assume your employer will put forth an appropriate effort to remove as many safety hazards as possible. In fact, there are both state and federal laws that mandate that employers make worker safety a priority. 

If you notice hazards in your workplace or believe your employer is compromising your safety and well-being, you may take action. You have the right to report safety hazards, but employers may not respond kindly to this. In fact, some California employees experience retaliation after reporting a hazard in their place of work. If you experienced mistreatment after filing a report or making a complaint, you have legal options available to you.

New laws will impact California workplace discrimination claims

When a person experiences unfair treatment in the workplace, it is that worker's right to speak out and take legal action. In many cases, this involves speaking out about experiencing workplace discrimination. While anyone who experiences this in the workplace can take legal action, there is a limited amount of time to do so. Thanks to new California laws that will come into effect in January, this timeframe will be longer.

Up until this point, a person only had one year to report workplace discrimination and file a claim with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing. Under the new law, called the SHARE Act, an employee now has up to three years to do so. The federal discrimination laws still gives federal employees 180 days to report mistreatment in their places of work.

Has mistreatment at work caused you to suspect discrimination?

Being employed is an important aspect of most California residents' lives. You may have had to search long and hard before you found a position that fit your skills, and you may have felt elated when you landed the job. However, after some time in your position, you may have begun to feel as if something was not right.

At first, you may have heard co-workers, or even your employer, make inappropriate remarks in the workplace. In some cases, people may have directed those remarks at you or at your expense. You may have ignored the behavior at first, but as it continued or even got worse, your work and well-being may have begun to suffer.

Sexual harassment prevalent among female attorneys

Every California employee has the right to a workplace that is free from degrading and inappropriate treatment from employers and co-workers. Sexual harassment is an unfortunate problem in many different types of workplaces, and the legal field is no exception. Statistics indicate that as many as 54% of female attorneys experienced sexual harassment at some point in their careers. 

A recent study found that not only do many female lawyers experience sexual harassment at work, around 63% of them experience bullying at work as well. This treatment has led to many women leaving the legal profession in pursuit of work in a less hostile and intimidating environment. Despite the prevalence of harassment incidents, estimates suggest only around one-quarter of them are reported.

4 types of harassment you could face in the workplace

Many California residents start their jobs looking forward to the experience and new opportunities they will gain. You may have landed a job that you thought would bring you challenges and enjoyment, but what you may not have expected was mistreatment in the workplace.

Unfortunately, workplace harassment is a serious issue that can affect workers who have been in the same job for years or who may have just started a new position. It can come about for a number of reasons, and the effects can be detrimental to you as a victim. Still, before reporting any incidents, you may wonder whether what you are facing is actually harassment.

Workers' compensation for occupational hearing loss

California workers have the right to a reasonable expectation of safety, regardless of the nature of a specific job. This includes protections against noise levels that could eventually lead to occupational hearing loss. This is a more prevalent problem than many realize, and it could actually be grounds to pursue benefits through a workers' compensation claim.

According to the results of a recent study, around 600 million people face exposure to dangerous levels of noise at work. In fact, noise is one of the most common and most serious occupational hazards. Over time, certain levels of regular noise exposure can lead to hearing loss of varying degrees. Scientists have also found that noise may actually lead to an increased chance of high blood pressure. It may also impact digestive health.

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