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JB Umphrey
JB Umphrey, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 20233
Experience:  Assisting employees and employers for over 14 years.
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In Wisconsin; an At Will State; nonunion company. This law:

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In Wisconsin; an At Will State; nonunion company. This law: “You have the right to discuss working conditions with co-workers”. Ok. Here is a description of a work environment/employed in Residential Health Care. There are significant issues: continuously short staffed, can’t get any support for the so called light weight staff/nonparticipating/lazy staff, no manager on site and no one wants job because no one wants to work for the manager in the Region, many things medically not getting done that are supposed to be getting done like medically ordered requirements-counting meds, meds missing, behaviors high, Residents medical equipment disappearing and documentation disappearing, excessive hours needed to be worked (some times more than the 16 maximum and less than 8 hours off in between these shifts; which is against State Regulations) (overtime is being paid). Management finds time to write up all staff for some issues and/or write up the people who are working the hardest to try and keep some stability for crazy stuff vs. giving support and hiring additional staff. Like: not shoveling the driveway in a 6 inch snow storm (never been on the chore list and short staffed) or Sick resident left to sleep and needed depends changed at change of shift but didn’t get to at that precise time because other 2 residents needed hygiene done for appointments and communication was done with change of staff re need and possibility of the resident being sick (no discussion; just write up). Write ups that are just plan lies/non truths. All causing a domino effect in the work environment and it appears blame is trying to be put on some of these workers working the hardest (scapegoating) for the problems. Management threatening employees not to talk about the work conditions; things like possible schedule changes to help make improvements or reality when some ones hours get changed to the grave yard shift and locations changed to out of town and management says this staff volunteered for the shift when it was clearly not by choice. Calling staff at home on inconsiderate time frames to discipline and/or call to work hours. Asking employee to drive hours out of there way for meetings on this when they have clearly worked unsafe amounts of hours (e.g. 70+ in a week all 3 shifts). People get fired for discussing these and the reality of the work conditions with coworker’s. Wondering what could possibly be done to fix these issues. Is this a violation of Right to discuss working conditions with co-workers? Reality of HR and multiple levels of management seem to support this is how the employees should be treated. State complaints take time and considered for some things. Please advice if this is and realistic possible action for a complaint process. Thank you.
Welcome and thank you for your question!

I am sorry to learn of the facts you've described. It would be helpful to know, are the employees talking about forming a union to represent them in the workplace?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

No. The discussions were not to consider a union. Just passing in work and the reality of things. The amount of hours every one had to cover because of being excessively short staff was wearing on every one as many pulled together to try and hold things together. Working that many hours regularly takes most of your energy and staff tried to be positive with new hires but the job itself was difficult so the things going on were not helping in obtaining new hires to stay. Plus people have other things going on in their lives. Also with the 2014 health insurance; benefits were announced to be cut for some part-time employee's and the cost of health insurance was being considered because the renewal for the plan comes up in August. Again.....discussions of work conditions occurring around every one.


Thank you.

An option would be to contact the Milwaukee office of the NLRB and file an unfair labor practice charge against the employer.

You can find their contact information here:
Regional Office
310 West Wisconsin Avenue
Suite #700
Milwaukee, WINNN-NN-NNNN


The complaint form that you would complete is found here:

My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back. I am happy to address follow-up questions. Thank you for your business!

~~ J.B.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Worth a try and worth every penny of the $40. Thank you. A few of us thank you. Have a good day.

You are most welcome! Please do not forget to click on excellent service feedback so that we are credited for assisting you.

~~ J.B.
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