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Boss Posts Notice Requiring Workers To Be On Call 24/7 & Pick Up Extra Shifts 'Without Complaining' — 'This Is Not Optional'

Photo: @f-ckyouiquit / Twitter; @attorneyryan / TikTok; Canva Pro
lawyer discussing sign requiring workers to be on call 24/7

It seems like every day there's a new story about a boss or CEO who has made totally inappropriate demands of their employees, and a photo of a sign posted in an office that has been circulating on the internet is no exception.

Not only does the sign make new rules that are totally over a line, but an employment lawyer says it's also a great way for the boss who made it to get sued. 

The sign makes rules requiring workers to be on call 24/7 and work extra thifts 'without complaining.'

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Something is definitely afoot with managers nowadays. As workers become more aware that they are totally expendable to the companies and people they work for, it seems as if trends like "quiet quitting" and "acting your wage," along with ongoing staffing shortages, have made managers resort to increasingly unhinged measures to try to retain their employees.

No wonder an online trend has emerged recently of people filming themselves quitting their jobs in epic fashion. People have simply had enough with the madness.

And 'madness' is certainly the perfect word this sign a boss posted at their business. Where exactly it came from isn't known, but the impact it's made on the internet has been huge nonetheless.

Photo: @f-ckyouiquit / Twitter

The sign blares that "EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY: all staff must leave their cellphones on and make themselves available when not on shift. Consider yourself 'on call.'"

That alone is asking... well, more than a lot, but the sign doesn't just stop there. "You must answer calls from Gary and if you are asked to cover a shift you must do so without complaints," the sign goes on to demand before adding that its decrees on not only working overtime but workers' emotional response thereto "is not optional."

The sign finishes by positioning its wildly inappropriate and deeply unhinged decrees as team-building motivation. "Let's set some record profits this quarter," it reads, before finishing with "go team" with not so much as a period, let alone an exclamation point. 

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But the boss's sign requiring workers to be on call 24/7 isn't just inhinged, it's illegal — and a labor lawyer says Gary and the company have set themselves up for multiple lawsuits.

People were pretty shocked by the audacity shown by Gary and the company in the boss's sign. As one person on Twitter put it, "the moment my job posts something like this is the moment I submit my 2 week notice, effective as of 14 days prior."

But the audacity, while stunning, isn't the real story here. The fact that this boss is putting himself on track to be sued out of existence is. 



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Ryan Stygar is an attorney known as @thelaborlawyer on TikTok. And when this sign requiring workers to be on call 24/7 crossed his desk, he had plenty to say about it. "Power trips at work are nothing new," he said in a TikTok on the matter, "but this bad boss broke multiple federal laws, and because of this sign, he owes each and every employee a huge check."

This is because the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act requires that employees be paid when they're on call in many cases. The rules do vary depending on whether you're on-call on a job site or at home, for example. But, Stygar says, "the general rule is, the more restrictions they put on you, the more likely it is you have to be paid."

In the case of this boss, Stygar pointed out the rule that "you must answer calls from Gary" and that employees are required to pick up extra shifts if asked "without complaints "sounds pretty restrictive to me." 

"An employer's best defense to not pay you is to say it's optional. But Gary did us a favor and said it's not optional. So looks like this has to be paid."

And as for Gary and company's rah-rah "let's set some record profits"? Stygar quipped, "you know what? You're going to need those record profits, because the payout for [this is] going to be expensive." Good luck, Gary!

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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.