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friends in USA, print this out, and post it in your workplace and around your neighbourhood!

@crashglasshouses hm... American free speech, world-famous? Says a lot it it needs to be printed... :/

@szymonbrycki a lot of people don't know this information because the working class is buried under a mountain of legislation most of its members can't read. bosses do this everywhere, not just USA. canadian workers don't know their rights either.

@crashglasshouses but... Isn't the free speech, unlimited, enshrined in the US Constitution? 🤔 Which is actually problematic?

@crashglasshouses if there is free speech as the main value of Constitution, then it follows that workers CAN talk about their salaries? I mean, it's pure logic?

@crashglasshouses and when additional law COULD be made, it is not really necessary? At least shouldn't be?

@szymonbrycki "freedom of speech" hasn't been and isn't always free. a lot of people have been convinced by the employing class that they are not allowed to discuss things like wages. a century ago, in California, there were free speech fights where cops would arrest dozens of people one after the other, for speaking about a union, as each one would take the place of the next and attempt to continue the speech. they could be really brutal affairs, with cops swinging their clubs.

@crashglasshouses I mean... isn't free speech absolute in US (but I think not in a philosophical sense?). I believe that's the reason why in the US there cannot be a homophobic hate speech law, like we have in many European countries?

Ah, so the Muricans' free speech is free when Murican feel comfy with that and only then. It actually... explains a lot? :/

@szymonbrycki @crashglasshouses

You have a point, but there are some things you have not taken into account.
1. Free speech is cherished and protected, but not at all absolute. Your speech cannot harm others, for instance. Fraud, for another.
2. Companies are not the government and they can make rules that limit speech in the work place. (No tweeting on company time, no swearing, non-disclosure, etc.)
3. In the US there is often huge gaps between ideals, laws, and enforcement.

@SnerkRabbledauber @crashglasshouses

I know that free speech is never absolute :) however, it seems to me than Americans don't know that and I am speaking about free speech in sense of American law, not philosophical one :)

@szymonbrycki @crashglasshouses

I see.

You are very right about Usians not understanding our own laws.

@szymonbrycki @crashglasshouses

But companies are not bound by the first amendment. Without a law saying otherwise they would be free to fire you for discussing your salary.

@szymonbrycki @crashglasshouses

In case you're not deliberately misunderstanding here, or for anyone else who might be confused, I have decided to explicate.

"Free speech" is a matter of what the law is not permitted to abridge. Your actual behaviour at a given time and place, however, may be affected not only by laws, but also by the conditions of a contract to which you are party, for instance, a contract of employment. In a simple case, for instance, a cinema actor's contract may require him to deliver the lines he's given. If he deliberately does otherwise, wasting the time and money of the film producers, he may be liable for monetary penalties. He cannot plead "freedom of speech" to get out of that.

The point here is that, although an employer may announce a policy, or even include in the contract a provision, that you're not permitted (generally under penalty of losing your job) to speak with other workers about your pay, the law prohibits such a policy or clause from taking effect in most cases.

@szymonbrycki @crashglasshouses

There has never been unlimited free speech in the US. There have always been and always should be some limits.

@szymonbrycki Mostly because the lawmakers are pretty invested, themselves, in hate speech. The repug voter base is heavy on bigots, and most of the rest of them (in both parties) benefit a lot from the "you must be this white to ride" culture. Giving more rights to more people weakens the position of rich white men so they won't support it.

@crashglasshouses It is not illegal, however, for your boss to say "We're going to have to let you go, because you're just not a good fit for our team family spirit," after he found out you told someone how much you were being paid. So be careful, be private. But please, please discuss your compensation.

@crashglasshouses I didn't realize this was so much of an issue! I should print a bunch of these out

@crashglasshouses @rysiek important exceptions:

if you have control over others' compensation, the org can prohibit you from discussing your own

the org can prohibit you from discussing *other people's* compensation without their consent

But aside from those? YES, talk about compensation. Being quiet about it generally only benefits your employer

@darrenpmeyer
If you sign a contract that says you agree not to discuss your compensation, is that enforceable?
@crashglasshouses @rysiek

@TMakarios @crashglasshouses @rysiek if you're an employee, my understanding is that's an illegal contract term; it would be worth checking with your State's Department of Labor though

@darrenpmeyer
I'm not actually in the USA; I was just curious, but thanks for the answer!
@crashglasshouses @rysiek

@crashglasshouses we have #talk-pay in slack, and an anonymous submission form that reports there. It’s great!

@apg i strongly recommend not doing that, specifically with Slack, if your boss has access to it.

@crashglasshouses why’s that? Apparently, there was a problem at one point in time, and someone left over it. HR let’s it go now.

@apg cause your boss can read everything you say. the less the boss knows about conversations between you and fellow workers, the better. HR is a rat.

@crashglasshouses it’s not a secret. The channel is public to the organization. Also, retaliation for discussion is illegal, as per this image… I get that this is potentially dangerous waters. That’s why there’s an anonymous salary submission form.

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