what do i do? i’m 16 and i can’t work today. i put on my availability i could only work friday

  1. A word to the wise , get copies of or photo every document you can. Schedules, availability, RTO's etc. Take every opportunity to protect yourself.

  2. At 16 I worked at Burger King, during interview I told him I couldn't work wknds (divorced parents, dad got me on weekends.) Said that's fine. First week, I'm on the sched for the wknd. Complained, they argued they needed help, said sorry. Next week, I'm sched for wknd again. Had to argue again. Reluctantly they removed me. Saturday morning that week, they called 2 times saying I had to come in. Said sorry. Monday comes, after school I go to work, busses full of out of state basketball players roll up. I'm the only cook. Only training I had was a couple hour did watching burger assembly on video. Seriously, that was it. I walked out. Never told anyone I quit, didn't say a word, just walked out. They never called again. Thanks BK for teaching me a valuable lesson for my first ever job

  3. This. Remind them of your availability. If that doesn’t work for them, you can let them know you will find a position that works better for everyone. It sounds like they are trying to bully you and you don’t need that.

  4. Nah.. there is no point. That manager is just stupid so just quit and find one of the other 100 jobs out there for kids.

  5. When I tried that, years ago at Blockbuster, with an approved time off that had been scheduled and approved 5 months in advance, they rescinded it the night of the shift less than an hour before they wanted me to start (and while I was getting into makeup for an opera I was performing in), and then handed me a final written warning for a “no call, no show” with the reason “a request for time off is only a request; we can take it away whenever we want”. I categorically refused to sign it, and told them to send it to head office, unsigned, with the same approval I had in writing from when I scheduled the night off.

  6. i doubt a 16 year old has the type of job with a contract. what you put on your availability on your job application does not count. Of course employers should work with people, but in most places they really don't have to, legally speaking.

  7. This and remain polite. It may not be apperant to the person solving the issue that you aren't available and they day is already going poorly. Their employee scheduling system may not showyour custom availability and this manager may not have been informed. Empathize and politly remind them that a conditon of your emplyment was not working on Fridays. "I wish I could help today, but as I mentioned during my hiring I'm not available on Fridays due to school obligations. Any other day and I'd be on my way. Apologies i can't help today." If that goes poorly, well you found out sooner that you should look for a better employer.

  8. Or remind them that if they're having trouble finding people to fill shifts, firing employees won't present a solution any time soon.

  9. Lol this guy is an amazing manager. “My hiring practices have created problematic understaffing on a regular basis but don’t fear I have a solution: I am going to fire someone so there will be even less workers.”

  10. “People don’t show up for shift. Don’t fire them. Pressure a 16 year old into showing up. Fire the 16 year old who shows up for assigned shifts, keep people who blow it off”

  11. Sounds a lot like the manager that took over for my department at my old retail job. So many folks I knew since I was a kid and then worked with quit. At best I know like two folks still. Union store even.

  12. That's what always urks me about places like this, who don't have enough staff. It has always been my understanding that if no staff members are available to cover, it is the responsibility of the manager, assistant manager, or shift leader who are expected to cover. Mostly due to the fact that they typically get paid more and are always key-holders. I'm in my 30s now and began working when I was 16, and it always seemed super unprofessional when they can't staff accordingly. Many years ago I had a boss who suddenly changed the schedule on a whim without telling anyone (on a day I wasn't at work). He called me (a new mom at the time) the next day when I was supposed to have the day off to ask why I wasn't at work for my scheduled shift. I looked at my copy of the schedule and said he must be mistaken because it was my day off. It's not exactly easy to find a babysitter at 6:30 am on short notice, and day care cost my ex and I about $400 a month for the days I did work. It was just too much. I ended up coming in a couple hours later after my ex's mom happened to be free and could watch him for a few hours. I eventually quit by walking out on him right before the lunch rush, when he pulled me aside to tell me I was too friendly with customers (the fuck?). He was literally bipolar and told me he had decided to not take any medication after he was diagnosed. The place was a shit show when I started working there. I ended up managing and training the staff, ordering and picking up supplies, doing bookkeeping and even making fliers for weekly specials we ran. Many small business owners are absolutely ridiculous and expect you bend over backwards and take it up the ass raw for them for little pay

  13. They just try to make people like OP desparate and to go out of their way to be available anyway for that job. Unfortunately it works with some people and they abuse that shit.

  14. So many decisions made by management are driven by ego and kneejerk reactionism and not at all by logic, business sensibility, or even the smallest modicum of common sense. SO many.

  15. As I stated upon being hired I can only work Fridays. Unfortunately if more hours are required of me I will have to find employment elsewhere. Have a nice day.

  16. Personally, I wouldn't have hired a 16 year old with limited availability. Even if they were a summer hire, I would have asked about availability through the school year.

  17. Someone explain the logic of having challenges of covering a shift by creating more uncovered shifts by firing someone who clearly stated they could not work on certain days. It’s a downward spiral for this company. Bullying an employee who otherwise is doing a satisfactory job?

  18. Because they’re used to using this tactic to scare others into doing what they say. They don’t think about the actual repercussions and potentially losing the employee cause it works so well for people who need that job to survive or feed their family.

  19. Guarantee it's some shit minimum wage job at a grocery store or something similar. They tend to have insanely high turnover rates because their entire business model is "exploit underage workers until they quit"

  20. i did that to my manager at popeyes. i didn’t show up for 3 days and he called me asking where i was. i said “hold on let me read your text that says,‘don’t bother showing up anymore” lmfao

  21. If you want to keep the job, it's important to leave a way open for them to back down while saving face. Something like:

  22. Yes to the first part, I would not disclose the second part... They don't need to know why you can't come in... Ever. Given the snapshot of their attitude and environment, they will only ever use it against you.

  23. i agree with this. i’d also like to suggest that you try not to make a habit of apologizing for stuff like this. you’re not doing anything wrong. often, with egomaniacal managers, apologizing tells them that you feel guilty, rather than just sympathizing with the situation that they’re in. simply saying “no. i am not available today” reinforces a boundary that you have already set that they are trying to violate. they don’t know what you have going on outside of work and they dont have to because you’ve already established when you are able to set aside time to come work for them. i get that it can be a hard habit to break, especially when you want to do a good job. but its definitely worth it to set boundaries and maintain them without apologizing for doing so. it helps keep their expectations in check

  24. Building off of this, OP look up your local laws for minors. You may not be legally able to work as late as that shift. I believe in NY when I was a minor working I couldn't work past 9 during school years, 10 during summer. So that 6-11 if that's a PM shift might be breaking the law.

  25. This is great advice, except for giving the reason in the second part. She stated her availability was Friday only - they accepted. Even if she had provided a more open availability, notification 3 hours prior to the start of a shift in what I’m assuming is retail or fast food and not neurosurgery is not something that can be held against her.

  26. Absolutely not, they don't need to know why he's not coming in at all. Period. It doesn't matter if he's out of the country, having a family emergency, or just wants to take a nap.

  27. I am a mom of a daughter the same age as you, and going to tell you exactly what I’ve told her. Never put a workplace before your health, family, or school. Never let an opportunity pass because of your employer. You do not owe your employer. Establish firm boundaries early on and never give into them. It is perfectly acceptable to do favors every once in a while, but make it clear that it is an exception. Favors and “helping out” can easily turn into an employer taking advantage of your good will and nature. Always be aware of that.

  28. Dont cave and go in. The company doesn't own you and they need to learn that. If they insist on you coming in on your scheduled days off then that isn't a company that you should work for anyway.

  29. Was going to post this exact thing. You are 16, this job will not be anything to you in 10 years when you are 26. Quiting should not be an issue.

  30. OP doesn't even have to respond. That manager is bothering them off the clock, there is no need to acknowledge unless they intend to help and cover or are on the clock during their scheduled time.

  31. Better yet, every text message just repeats the same mantra: "I am only available on Fridays. Check my hiring documents."

  32. I had to scroll down way too far to find this. Unless you’re on call, ignore communications outside of working hours from the employer.

  33. This is the answer. Especially for the sort of work you'd be doing at 16. Remind them that your only available day is Friday. You will work Friday, as agreed upon, and any contact outside of your agreed upon workday will be ignored, as you are not free the other days of the week.

  34. I always, always tell my employers that I do not communicate by texting. They can send me an email or call me if it is that important. Still does not mean I will answer immediately unless I agreed to be on call. I got sucked into the texting bullshit with my last pharmacy tech job, and they would not leave me the fuck alone on my days off. Multiple texts on days off, especially if I did not answer. I had a second job and was going to school full time, and the incessant texting stressed me out so much.

  35. This job does not look the type that has an HR. Not to mention that HR may or may not help here; their job is to deal with people in the companies interests. That doesn't mean they'll help out management, but it also doesn't mean they'll help out You. It's all about the companies interests.

  36. We had a kid who was constantly being scheduled and not showing up. Finally, one day the manager called and spoke with him. Kid said, I told HR that due to school activities, I’m not available until November. HR never told the manager. 🤦‍♀️

  37. LOL, I had a job at Kroger at 16 and gave them my graduation day and birthday schedule "off". I told them I could not work the days of grad rehearsal, graduation, my birthday (plans with my parents out of town). So they scheduled me during some of these times, and I said "ok, well if you aren't going to be flexible I quit".

  38. If the parents are decent, they don’t want to talk to the parents because they hired a kid because they thought they could intimidate them and do whatever they want.

  39. They’re definitely taking advantage that you’re a minor so they’re used to making empty threats like that to scare you into submission it’s fucked of them to treat kids like that

  40. I dont understand these places where if you can’t come in RIGHT NOW you are “fired”. Won’t they be up schitts creek tomorrow without that person they let go???

  41. "We need YOU to cover shifts because NO ONE will cover them. If you don't we'll FIRE you, and then who will cover the shifts?"

  42. You're 16. This is not going to be your career, if they don't respect your availability you tell them to fuck right off.

  43. regardless of what you wrote as your availability, they will probably still fire you (judging by the tone of your boss/manager). Good news is, you have it in writing that they are firing you because you can't work outside of your availability and should 1000% qualify for unemployment while you find another job.

  44. This! Let them fire you, you have all the proof you need to get unemployment! Also, if they decide to pull out an “exit interview” DO NOT sign anything. They’re trying to spin it as you’re quitting instead of being fired for the unemployment office! Look up the laws protecting minor employees and print out a copy so you know your rights, and think about reporting them for attempting to circumvent the laws that are there to protect you!

  45. So they are short on people so their move is to fire people through an ultimatum causing more shortage... err... ok

  46. Here's the thing, man: people lie, especially shitty people. They needed somebody who could work more than you were willing to, but because they suck they didn't have any applicants. They took you and said they could work with your availability, but it was a lie. They always intended for you to depend on the job and for them to leverage that to make you work more/harder/different days and times than you said you could. Cut bait and find something else.

  47. Why are so many employers on this subreddit like this? This and controlling bathroom breaks, drinking, not being able to have surgery…. how do real human beings think this is ok, ever?

  48. I was hired on in a small call center and they told us that we had to raise our hand and get permission to log off the phone for a bathroom break. I worked for about 4 hours and put my hand up like a chump. Was told I should have went to the bathroom on my last break and I could wait til the next one. I was like, alright I'm not going to work here then. Got my shit and walked out while being berated by the supervisor for being unprofessional. They didn't even want to pay me for the 4 hours I worked but I eventually got it out of them.

  49. If you've already told them your availability, then fuck them. Report them to your local DOL for threatening to fire you for not coming in, when you're not available, and not scheduled that day.

  50. Love this threat. I don't have enough employees to cover the current shift however, if you don't drop everything and come in I'm going to fire you, too. 🤷🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️

  51. Call the bluff. Say “on my availability I put only Fridays, because that’s the only day I can work. I was hired with that information. I am 16 and school must come first. If this is unacceptable I fully understand. I hope the loss of my Friday availability can be covered with your current staff without too much stress.”

  52. “Well that’s sad to hear since I was hired as ‘Fridays only’. But it’s totally ok since I’m 16 and this is just my first bs job, not my career, I’ll just find another job after you fire me. Thanks for the heads up. And good luck getting even more shifts covered as you fire more people.”

  53. Ignore everyone saying “quit now”. If you quit, you won’t get unemployment. Call the boss’s bluff and remind them of your previously stated availability. If they fire you, no big deal. Seriously. There are plenty of other jobs out there you could get right now…and you can collect unemployment while you look. Being let go from this job at age 16 will not negatively affect your work history in any way. In 10 years you won’t even bother putting it on your resume.

  54. Unironically the best option is to say "lol k good luck covering my shift too" and then block the number and don't go back. This us genuinely abusive behavior already and will only get worse if you stay.

  55. They CAN'T force you to come in when you're NOT ON THE SCHEDULE! I fucking hate these people. I have a 16 years old son. They're lucky you aren't my kid.

  56. You are 16, and you put your availability as Friday, they can fire you, but you can also report them to the DoL for it. Trying to take advantage of underaged workers is HUGE deal.

  57. Don’t walk, RUN. This is a toxic workplace, they will manipulate you and you deserve better. Do yourself a favor and put your foot down and stand up for what is right for you. Play it cool and work your Fridays while you look for a new job. You’ll thank yourself later.

  58. Let them fire you, it won't follow you like a lot of employers will say. I was a hiring manager for years, we only care about what you can do right now.

  59. You are 16. What kind of job is it? Is it retail or fast food? Let them fire you, collect unemployment and find a new job. Fuck them. Your manager is a douche, your company is ripping you off, and you have agency in this. Fuck them.

  60. Kid, call the possible bluff and find another job. You're 16. There are also plenty of other places hiring part time shift positions across the country right now.

  61. Just reply “in my availability and in my interview I made it clear that I am only available on Fridays. If you intend to fire me due to my availability having not changed, then I will expect a meeting with HR to explain the situation. Otherwise, I will be in on Friday for my shift.”

  62. Based on the fact you keep asking me to come in on my days off and your lacking managerial skills, I think I will take the offer to stop working. Thanks and goodluck.

  63. "Based on my availability when you hired me, I am only available on Friday. I am sorry that I am not available any other days, but you knew that when you hired me."

  64. Walk away. You're new and they are already disrespecting your limits and laying claim to parts of your life that you've already told them are off limits. Give in to this bullying even once and it will get worse.

  65. Fuck 'em. You're 16; you can get another job no problem; besides I'm guessing they only paid minimum wage anyways, so its not like there's not other, better jobs out there anyways.

  66. "I am sorry for the predicament the current wave of sickness has caused for the company, however, the agreement and the job I agreed to is a part time position. I have clearly registered my availability as pr. the procedures explained to me. As such I am not available to to work those shifts. It is not for lack of will or lack of sympathy, but I have made other commitments on those days, commitments I must honor as well as I honor the shift we agree on. If you find it necessary to let me go for not being able to work on days I am not scheduled for or have told you I would be available to be called upon, it is of course your prerogative. I am sorry I cannot help you in this situation, but honoring your request would mean violating a commitment I have made elsewhere. I hope you can see, that if the situation was reversed you would also expect me to honor an agreed shift regardless of other offers."

  67. They won't fire you, if they do you can apply for unemployment and call this a lay off. Explain to them you've met the schedule they set but they keep asking you to come in on your day off and get another job. Don't worry about it, jobs do this all the time. I used to work for unemployment so trust me if they expect you to come in on your days off, you qualify.

  68. Tbh i wouldnt have hired someone who can only work fridays but i dont think its fair to fire someone who cant work days they said they couldnt work shitty mgr

  69. i told him i could work whenever in the summer, and once school started i would be working only friday’s. he said yes and hired me

  70. In the wise words of my ancestors, “Fuck ,‘Em”. First though tell them you will save them retraining if they respect your value as a human being and a worker.

  71. They hired a kid knowing they'd have a limited schedule and are now baffled that they have a limited schedule?

  72. I started working at 16 and regret it. I missed so many teenage events because of work. If you don't need to work, don't. Enjoy this time.

  73. You're 16. Which means theoretically you still get to enjoy the parents' house. I doubt this job is Have-or-Die. If this db wants to make this an issue, take your papers and this conversation to HR and let them hash it out, OR just walk.

  74. They think they can bully you because you are young. Tell them you can only work Fridays, it sounds like they need people anyways so letting you go would be a big loss. If they do then I wish you luck finding a job that respects your availability.

  75. Remind them that your availability is in writing as Friday only. Also, good job just saying “sorry i’m busy” rather then giving them a whole essay. It’s straight to the point and how it should be done

  76. Call their bluff, obviously they are understaffed. You can’t work, you told them your availability. Either they do fire you and you looked for better employment because they sound like douche canoes Or you called their shit and they don’t fire you because It would put them in a worse position.

  77. Remind them that you hold the cards and you can find a job that pays better much more easily than they can find workers.

  78. I would quit. It's just not worth it to work for a place that threatens you and doesn't respect your time. There are other places that will have good managers who will respect you. Sorry, I know it's a pain in the rear to find a new job, but these people are jerks and you deserve better.

  79. I've had this issue with my 16 year old daughter. I remind her that she is in control. There are a hundred other jobs just like the one she has and in those hundred there are a few that will be a wonderful experience, and there are a few that will be terrible. She has the power to choose.

  80. You hold all of the cards here. They don’t want to let you go because they’re already short handed. Tell them they knew your availability when they hired you so it’s not your problem or your responsibility that they haven’t staffed accordingly on the days that you can’t work. Get everything in writing and if they keep pulling that stuff then look elsewhere because it’s not worth it. Don’t let them bully you though. You’re 16 and you have other stuff to deal with and worry about without your job trying to force you to come in to work when they know you aren’t available. Don’t let them make you think you’re in the wrong either. You are well within your rights to deny their request as long as you want to.

  81. I run a pizza place (small family owned) and 90% of the people I employ are high school kids. I’ve never once nor has it even occurred to me to threaten to fire someone because they wouldn’t come in for someone else’s shift. The opposite, I almost always offer extra $$$ for coming in on short notice. If they say they can’t, I either work it myself or run it short staffed. It’s not their job to be on my beckon call, this manager is an idiot.

  82. You do you. You can always get another job. Don't let a jerk mess things up for you. Life is about who you love and who loves you. Everything else is just BS.

  83. Hey, its a Friday only job. You're only 16. This isn't anything to worry about. Tell them that your agreement is Friday only and if they hired you to work shifts you told them you're not available thats not on you.

  84. If you're not scheduled for a day you do not HAVE TO come in. You're 16, I assume you live at home and thus don't need this job.

  85. You're 16, whatever else you got going on (school) is more important than a job. Don’t let them bully you, you gave them your availability, it’s their problem. You can find another job since young workers are cheap there are always places hiring.

  86. Ah yes, the good old-fashioned "don't worry, our schedule is very flexible, it's okay if you only work certain days" when you're signing on, "come to work today or you're fired" when you're already on board.

  87. You could have a lawsuit if they fire you. 1. They hired you based on a set availability. 2. They are calling you in on a day that you aren't scheduled, because they are busy and need help. You are under no obligation to work on a day that you aren't scheduled. They are lucky that you even answered the text. Your day of is your time.

  88. I imagine there is a better job out there for you. Say, “I accepted the job based on my Friday only availability. Sounds like it’s not a good fit. Thanks for the experience so far and I wish you best of luck in your search.”

  89. Always laugh when they cry about not enough people to work but immediately threatening to fire you if you don't come in.

  90. "No." It is a really hard word to learn, I'm not being snarky and please don't take it that way. No was not a word I wanted to use when I was a teenager (am an elderly mid-40s now). But once I got over being squeamish saying "no" and ALSO not giving excuses when I do so I love it. You'll get there. Until then, just "No I gave you my availability, I simply can't work more than that" As loud as they want to babble, they really do need you more than you need them.

  91. since you're 16, you can find another job that will give you the schedule you want. The employers are stupid if a 16yo is suppose to have a on-call schedule or full time.

  92. Less than 3.5 hours notice to come into work is ridiculous. Not sure what the rules are where you are from but in the UK I'm pretty sure you're allowed to tell your boss to fuck off if they give you less than 24 hours notice

  93. lol trust me, your first or second job at 16 will not matter unless you are in a rough financial position. Tell them to kick rocks, and if they fire you, you'll find another job. If you DO need the money, start looking now, you might not be around for long.

  94. Tell him he's the manager. If no one can cover that shift, he needs to cover it himself. That is what he's supposed to do as a manager.

  95. They don't have anyone available so they are gonna fire you and have less people available, wow 5D chess by this company, for one you don't want to work for a company that cannot retain employees and 2 they are hassling you to pick up the slack you don't even want or need to work for these people at 16, they're butthurt and are hanging your job over you like you're some indentured servant and owe them

  96. Tell him good riddance. You’re 16, no offense but you can get a job for this pay anywhere. Your work history does not really matter at this point. I speak from experience, people try to take advantage of teenagers and young workers because they don’t know what their rights are, and they are afraid to say anything a lot of the time. Do not take it. Find a place that respects you.

  97. This individual can barely even type sentences correctly, let alone be taken seriously. Since they wanted to make a comment based on your availability is why they hired you so they will fire you. I would definitely send a message back stating.. ’ that’s exactly why you can’t fire me! I wrote on my availability as being only Fridays 🤙

  98. When I was hired I provided my availability. I was under the impression that I would only be required to work on the days that I indicated I was available to work. Thanks for the opportunity, but I don’t think this position is a good fit for me.

  99. Good job. Fire the employee that was minding their own business, that didn’t call in sick, and had no obligation to cover. Your boss is a tool. Just text back that you don’t respond to threats and quit. Save your self esteem, you’re worth more than that.

  100. Just say “I provided my availability to you when hired. I can only work Fridays. I am only 16 years old and cannot work without parental permission. I only have permission to work on Fridays.”

  101. "As my availability stated when I applied, I am only available Fridays, if that is no longer sufficient for you, then consider this my immediate resignation. I thank you for the opportunity to have worked with you and wish you the best if luck in the future."

  102. You’re 16. You don’t owe this person shit, and don’t let them try to intimidate you. Call their bluff. Text back telling them you’ll come pick up your last check. See how fast they pivot to “hey don’t be so hasty.”

  103. If you are in the US, by law they can't have you work that many hours in a single day because you are a minor (this is a law in a lot of states, but not all of them, so I'd check for your exact state first). What they are suggesting could be illegal and against child labor laws.

  104. Great logic from this manager: We don’t have workers so if you don’t come in I’ll remove another worker from the staff.

  105. Drop out of school and work there forever, never making more than 10bucks/hr, without benefits or retirement or vacation. Or just quit the job, keep going to school, study hard, earn a good useful degree and get a good paying job so you don’t have to deal with assholes like this manager.

  106. I had a similar issue. I told them I was unavailable Sundays and they said they required Sundays but could do 2 a month. After a month or two they started working me every Sunday.

  107. You're not on call. I always say no if they try to call me in. This person is just trying to intimidate you. Just respond with, "lol, okay, please mail me my last check."

  108. I worked at a restaurant when I was 16-18. During the school year, my availability was Sunday only, 6am to 2pm. New manager scheduled me several times for Saturday. I always had sports and was either at a meet or practice. I got fired 3 times....but only on Saturday. I would show up on Sunday like nothing happened. Head manager always took me back because he knew my schedule and never knew why new manager put me on for Saturday. It was always fun to see GONZO (their term for firing) on my schedule. Actually kinda loved that job.

  109. There’s plenty of other jobs. Don’t put yourself in a position to be stressed. Life is short and work isn’t everything

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