Seven things fic featuring British workplaces sometimes doesn’t quite get right
This short guide focuses on some of the differences between
British and American employment law and workplace norms. It is aimed at writers of
fan (and original) fiction concerned in some way with characters that work in the UK.
This is far from a comprehensive list, and inevitably there will be exceptions to the information detailed here.
It’s normal for employees to have a contract; in
fact, it’s a legal requirement for every employee to receive a contract within
eight weeks of their start date. This will specify a contractual notice period. For
permanent office/skilled employees this is usually a month, or three to six months for
increasingly senior employees. For short term contracts and lower paid work it
might be a week or two. (Those who have been employed continuously for more
than two years often have a notice period of at least one month due to laws
– notice periods apply when employers want to lay off their employees as well
as when employees want to leave their job.)
There’s no fire at will in the UK. Beyond
serious illegal acts like assaulting another employee or theft, you can’t
really sack anyone active immediately. (However, you can pay in lieu of notice –
ask them to leave immediately, but pay them however much they would have earned
over the length of their notice period.) This also means employees can’t
insta-walk out on their job without serious repercussions – they will have
broken their contract by leaving without working their notice period. An
employer might decide not to pursue them legally due to the cost (time and
money) of pursuing, but they would be entitled to go to a small claims court to sue
for financial loss. This all makes things a tad less dramatic than, e.g., Sam
Seaborn following Josh out of Gage Whitney Pace in In the Shadow
of Two Gunmen, but there you go.
All employees have the right to the legal
minimum of 28 days (including eight days correspondent to bank [public]
holidays) paid annual leave. This is pro rated for part timers. Even types of
employment status which can carry different rights, such as agency employees, have this right. A typical period of maternity leave for someone
in a permanent job would be nine to 12 months. And it’s holiday, not vacation,
but you already knew that, didn’t you?
There’s no such thing as exempt or non-exempt
employment status. There’s just employees paid by the hour (usually lower paid
work) or paid an annual salary, rather than it being a government designation.
Employment law is the same for employees of varying ranks and at companies
large and small. Employment law is also the same across the country, with some
minor differences in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Pension scheme, not 401(k).
Discrimination claims, unfair dismissal claims
and so on are heard at an employment tribunal (historically known as an
industrial tribunal) in front of a panel of tribunal judges, not a jury. Payouts
are stringently capped – so you’d never see awards in the multi-millions.
Just as you wouldn’t have a job with no paid
annual leave, you also wouldn’t have to accumulate paid sick days. For
professional roles, short term sickness absence will generally be on full pay.
Legally speaking, statutory sickness pay for absences due to illness of between
four days and 28 weeks is £89.35 a week (in 2017), but good employers will
often offer full or half pay for long term sickness (the longer the service,
the longer a period of full/half sick pay you may be entitled to.)
I wanted to mention something. This is our fifth press briefing since midnight, and obviously there’s one story that’s going to be dominating news around the world for the next couple days, and it would be easy to think that Joshua Lyman, President Bartlet, and Stephanie Abbott are the only people who were victims of a gun crime last night. They weren’t. Mark Davis and Sheila Evans of Philadelphia were killed by a gun last night. He was a biology teacher and she was a nursing student. Tina Bishop and Belinda Larkin were killed by a gun last night; they were twelve. There were 36 homicides last night. 480 sexual assaults. 3,411 robberies. 3,685 aggravated assaults. All at gunpoint. And if anyone thinks those crimes could have been prevented if the victims themselves were carrying guns, I only remind you that the President of the United States was shot last night while surrounded by the best trained armed guards in the history of the world.
“In The Shadow of Two Gunmen,” The West Wing
honestly tww doesn’t even count as queerbaiting bc it’s completely unintentional and aaron sorkin gets so upset whenever it comes up that he Accidentally made his show seem too gay ….. everyone just Is i cant believe these characters literally up and overturned his will
Okay you didn’t specify what kind of recs you wanted so [cracks knuckles] here we go:
Here’s a masterpost with pretty much all of his appearances, and here’s another one w working links in case you cant afford comics (if you want to buy them check websites like comixology)
I personally enjoyed:
> His robin run (both pre crisis and post crisis, but you don’t have to necessarily read both of them. You can skip pre crisis as he starts fresh on his post crisis run, but i think prec!jason is v cute and loved reading it.) (what does post and pre crisis mean? Well jason used to exist right? But then where was a reboot, the crisis thing, where his backstory, origin and personality completely changed. Which is why you don’t necessarily have to read pre-reboot, but as I said is a kinda fun read. You can skip it and read it later when you’re more familiar with the timeline and stuff, or not at all.)
Pre crisis— Batman #357-#400 / Detective Comics #524-#567 / Batman #401-403
Post crisis— Batman#408-#425 / Detective Comics#568-#582 / Blue Devil #19 / Action Comics #556, #594 / Batman Annuals #10-#13 / Superman Annual #11/ New Teen Titans #18- #21, #24, #26-#31 / Nightwing Year One #101-#106 / The Cult #1-#4 / DC Retroactive: Batman - The 80s
AsRed Hood: his appearances on Batman: Under the Red Hood* / Red Hood: The Lost Days
#69-#72 / Outsiders #44-#46 / Li'l Gotham
#2, #10, #12, #17, #20, #21, #24 / and Tiny Titans
#23, #29, #33, #39, #45, #47 / Countdown to Final Crisis #51
- #1 I know! i seem to be forgetting a lot of stuff! I personally didn’t like the rest of his appearances on other comics, but you can give it a shot ofc.
*When i say Batman: Under the Red Hood i mean the trade, which includes Batman #635-641, #645-50 / Batman Annual #25 / Batman #618 (Hush arc)
N52: n52 is a freaking mess. In my opinion Jason is badly written 24/7 but i guess i still enjoyed some stuff.
I can’t remember a lot of Batman & Robin but if my memory serves me right, theres a panel where Jason catches Damian with his fucking hips so theres that + Bruce is also an asshole to Jason in #20 (
#10-#12, #17, #20, #33- #37)
Batman Eternal was.. okayish too, if you don’t mind the Jason x Barbara, some ooc stuff, and Bruce being an asshole to Jason. Basically if you were okay with rhato, read this, you have nothing to lose. (
#10-#12, #15, #18-#20, #25-#26, #28)
Batman and Robin Eternal had their good fleeteing moments, but mostly is just cringe worthy, i wouldn’t rec it at all tbh but theres one (1) panel with steph and jason together so…. (And the Cass/Harper is p neat)
I also enjoyed him on: DC universe Presents #17 (which is Roy Centered but has some good Jason panels) / Supergirl#35 / Grayson #12, #15 / Deathstroke #15-16 were okaish / Secret Origins #5 / Batman/Superman Annual #1 /
> Rebirth: so far only Red Hood and the Outlaws, which surprisingly is pretty good so i’d rec reading it. Not as ooc and bad written as everything else the white demon has ever created.
> Other: somealternative universes! / didn’t know where to put them
Random question: top five episodes of The West Wing?
In no particular order:
- Take This Sabbath Day
- Celestial Navigation
- 17 People
- Two Cathedrals
- Hartsfields Landing
- Process Stories
- The Wakeup Call
- In the Shadow of Two Gunmen
- 20 Hours in America
This was so hard! I’m sorry I had to pick 10, five just wasn’t enough. They’re so hard to pick and I feel like I still left off a few lol. Thank you for the lovely ask!💚
“But that’s what leaders did, Leo thought. Empathy. Perhaps it wasn’t studied at the kind of schools Jed and Josh had gone to, but empathy was as great a part of leadership as ambition and integrity. Watching Jed talk to Josh, it struck Leo that here, in miniature, was why Jed Bartlet was going to be a great president.”