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Void Where Prohibited: Rest Breaks and the Right to Urinate on Company Time

by Linder, Marc

  • ISBN: 9780801433900
  • ISBN10: 0801433908

Void Where Prohibited: Rest Breaks and the Right to Urinate on Company Time

by Linder, Marc

  • List Price: $29.95
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press
  • Publish date: 01/01/2008
  • ISBN: 9780801433900
  • ISBN10: 0801433908
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Description: Although federal and state regulations require employers to provide toilets, government agencies, incredibly, do not require employers to permit workers to use them. Marc Linder, a labor lawyer and political economist, and Ingrid Nygaard, a physician specializing in urogynecology, place this regulatory breakdown in the wider context of the history of labor-management struggles over rest periods. They emphasize the physiological consequences that workers suffer when they are not allowed to interrupt work to rest or urinate.

Without legal protection, workers are held captive. Knowing that supervisors often deny permission to leave the production line, a poultry processor who cannot risk losing her job may urinate where she stands. Many now wear adult diapers designed for the incontinent. An elementary school teacher wanting to use the bathroom may take her whole class along.

Linder and Nygaard explain how protective rest period legislation has shrunk over time. Ironically, because most statutes singled out women for rest breaks, they were invalidated by Title VII's ban on sex discrimination. The authors explain other countries' regulations and conclude with a recommendation for legislation to mandate rest and bathroom breaks for all workers.

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