Going to work on a daily basis can become a mundane task that employees continually repeat. However, employees rarely stop to think about all of the laws that protect them and give them rights at work. If an employee is injured on their job, they can more than likely rely on workers’ compensation to cover their medical expenses. Although unable to work, the employee would still be able to receive livable wages. Minimum wage law ensures that nonexempt employees are paid a minimum of $7.25 per hour. Employees can even plan and save for retirement. If an employee does not like their job or career, they have the option to go and change it.
Now, take a brief moment and think about a work environment where all your protections and rights are taken away. Think about a work environment where there are no laws to protect you from an abusive boss. Although hard to conceptualize in a society saturated with laws and built-in protection, there was once a time when employees did not have any rights. In fact, at its earliest stage, the employer-employee relationship was seen as a master-servant relationship. Employees were not able to leave a job because there was no guarantee where or when they would get another one. Employees attempted to join unions to improve their work conditions but were met with opposition from their employers. Employers would often retaliate against employees who attempted to join unions. The opposition between the employers and employees often led to employees going on strike.