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We all have rights at work, which are guaranteed by law. When working people understand their rights and stand together to ensure they’re respected, everyone is better off.

Your rights at work come from two main places. First, you have statutory rights, which are rights guaranteed by law. Then you have contractual rights, which are contained in your contract of employment. Your contract of employment can’t take away any of your statutory rights.

Your rights can be broken into two main groups: individual rights, such as protection against discrimination, and group rights, such as union recognition.

If you think your rights are being breached, there are lots of ways you can take action. 

But employers are most likely to pay attention when workers act together. Unions exist to help workers get together, to stop unfair treatment and to make the world of work better for everyone.

This section offers basic information on your rights and on how to enforce them.

But it shouldn’t be taken as legal or financial advice. The law is complex and every case is different. Before taking any action, you should seek individual advice from your union or a qualified adviser.

Who is entitled to minimum pay?
Nearly all workers aged 16 and over, including part-time workers, fixed-term workers, agency workers, casuals, those working on 'zero hours' contracts and homeworkers, are entitled to the National Minimum Wage...
Do my daily breaks count as paid time?
Not unless your contract says so.
Under the Working Time Directive (which applies to most workers and sets out the minimum standards for working hours), your employer has to offer a break of at least 20 minutes if the working day is longer than six hours, but there is no requirement under the minimum standards for your employer to pay you for this break or to count it towards your working day...
Am I allowed time off work to see my doctor?
There is no general legal requirement for your employer to give you time off for medical appointments. Whatever entitlement you have to time off to visit the doctor will depend on your individual employment contract...
Do I get paid when absent on sick leave?
Your rights to be paid when off sick depend on what is in your contract of employment. Contracts usually have a clear written term stating what you are paid if you are off sick. Often the contract provides for full pay for a specified period, followed by reduced pay for a further period, subject to conditions on reporting the sickness absence.....

If I am temporarily laid off from work what is my pay position?
An employer facing financial difficulties may attempt to lay you off or suspend work for a fixed or unspecified period....
Am I entitled to a workplace pension?
First, you should check your contract terms. In the past, pension rights have been determined mainly by the employment contract. However, a very important change to the law has come about through introduction of pensions auto-enrolment....
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