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California forbids enforcing unsafe work quotas

On Behalf of | Dec 28, 2021 | Firm News

California’s Assembly Bill No. 701 updates some of the rules governing how employers operate their warehouse distribution centers. The California Legislative website notes that employers must communicate their production requirements and standards.

Companies must now provide written explanations of their work quotas. Clear instructions help employees recognize when a job begins to violate their health and safety rights. The new law also prohibits using computer systems to measure how long employees take breaks.

Written descriptions could help prevent accidents and injuries

Companies now have 30 days to provide new employees with written descriptions of their work quotas. Employees must receive detailed explanations on how many tasks they need to perform. The details must include the number of materials they must handle or produce during each shift.

California’s Labor Commission may review a company’s workers’ comp claims. A review could show how quotas may cause physical harm. Employees have a right to apply for workers’ comp benefits if their injuries occurred because they could not work fast enough.

Employers may not violate employees’ rights to safety or to take breaks

As reported by the Society for Human Resource Management, the new law forbids firing employees who cannot meet unsafe quotas. Employers may not take action against workers who fail to meet those quotas by reducing their hours or pay. The law also prevents companies from disrupting their employees’ rights to take rest breaks during their shifts.

By promoting workplace health and safety, the new bill aims to make employees aware of their rights. Employees may refuse to follow unsafe standards. Employers may not fire workers who cannot reach harmful quotas.