Fair/Unfair Treatment

Fair and Unfair Treatment in the Workplace in Uganda, Fair Treatment and the Law, Unfair Treatment and the Law, What Can I Do About Unfair Treatment? and more on AfricaPay Uganda.

What is fair treatment?

Fair treatment refers to treating employees with respect and dignity, respecting individual’s rights, and abiding by reasonable standards of conduct. Fair treatment of employees includes honouring their right to privacy and providing feedback regarding their performance in order to enable them to successfully meet job requirements.

What is unfair treatment?

Unfair treatment involves acts/ activities that are unreasonable, inhumane and degrading to the human being.

What are examples of unfair treatment?

  • Bullying, especially of new employees.
  • Discrimination - for example, unequal pay for equal work done, different measures occurring in the processes of termination and other employment rights such as entitlement to annual leave, sick pay, maternity and paternity leave, overtime, social security and pension.
  • Sexual harassment of employees.
  • Victimisation, especially against those that may be HIV/AIDS positive and such status is known by co-workers.

What should an employer do to minimise unfair treatment?

  • Develop and implement policies such as a non-discrimination policy, sexual harassment policy and HIV/AIDS policy among others.
  • Put in place a sound Human Resource Manual.
  • Engage workers or workers’ representatives in Collective Bargaining Agreements.

How can employee rights be categorized?

Employee rights fall into three categories, that is, the right to job security, the right to fair treatment by the employer and the right to fair treatment in the workplace.

Why is fair treatment critical for an employer?

Treating employees with respect and fairness is critical for two reasons. First, it establishes a company's reputation for fairness and impartiality. This reputation is carefully scrutinized by individuals both within and outside of the organization and is a vital factor in keeping and attracting not only desirable employees, but also customers.

The second, equally important reason is that identifying and safeguarding employee rights reduces the possibility of the company becoming embroiled in charges of discrimination, lengthy litigation and costly settlements.

How can an employer guarantee fair treatment of employees?

The right to specific information regarding company expectations and prohibitions should be clearly stated in the Human Resource Manual. These may include though not be limited to; the right to due process procedures including consistent rules and protocol for grievances; the right to a progressive system of discipline including: an oral warning, a written warning, suspension, transfer or demotion, and, as a last resort, discharge.

What more should an employer know about fair treatment within the workplace?

The employer should not forget that their employees are entitled to an environment in which they are treated with fairness and respect by their fellow workers.

Some rights of employees are: The right to equal and impartial treatment by other employees regardless of race, sex, age, national origin, disability, religion; the right to be free from sexual harassment; the right to information; and the right to knowledge about workplace hazards ranging from warnings about chemicals used in the company to necessary safety precautions and simple guidelines for avoiding accidents.

The Ugandan legislation protects employee rights, and it is the responsibility of the employer to be informed regarding the interpretation of these laws. Violations of workplace rights make the employer liable to charges of discriminatory practices.

It is important for company owners, managers, and employees to understand the importance of equal treatment of all workers, regardless of race, religion, and social standing.

If a person feels that he or she has been the victim of discrimination or retaliation, he or she may be eligible to pursue legal action against those responsible.

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Find out more about Sexual Harassment in Uganda.

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