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Unequal employment for those who commute by bike(12 posts)

Unequal employment for those who commute by bikestinkfoot247
Dec 30, 2003 8:34 PM
I commute by bike because I'm poor and can't afford a car. Well I could, but I would rather spend my $ on my bike. I was thinking of getting a construction job this summer to save up for school. People have told me that you have to have a car to get a construction job. Is that Legal, to discriminate against people who commute by bicycle. If driving is not part of the job description, how could that be legal?!?! My bike is much more reliable than most cars I could afford. Soo.. Anyway what do I do when I go to get a construction job and they tell me I need to have a car. What do I say. Please help me.
employers must discriminate and do discriminategala7516
Dec 30, 2003 8:59 PM
You wouldn't go to a doctor who doesn't have a degree, would you?

Look, the company must spend their money to get the job done the best they can. It is unfortunate that in this country commuting by bike is not more mainstream. You have put yourself in this situation based on the decisions you chose to make. Maybe someone can give you a ride to job sites?

Please don't waste your energy on this. Use your energy to get your degree so you can have a job that allows you to afford a car.

Good luck to you and have a Happy New Year!
a different opinionaaroncvc
Dec 30, 2003 9:32 PM
obviously there are jobs which require the use of a car to complete your work, or get from location to location. it's not discrimination, as it's simply a requirement of some jobs. if you had a "desk job", and weren't hired because you didn't have a car, the situation would be different...

on the other hand, there's plenty of jobs out there that pay enough for one to afford a car, that don't require a degree. it's ridiculous to assert that simply because you can afford a car, that you should drive one, or would want to drive one.

not having to pay for car insurance, not worrying about maintenance, tags, inspections, or ownership tax is a blessing. i don't have to worry about financing a vehicle, and i save a ton of money in gas. getting to races can be a pain, at times, but planning ahead and hitching a ride with a teammate is a pretty easy solution... or just riding to the race (a perfect warm-up, usually).

i'm sure you can find a job that you can ride to. even if you have to take less pay, just think about the money you'll be saving. if you want to think about it ethically, you're not supporting the oil industry, while making a contribution, albeit small, to the environment by taking one potential vehicle off the road. if you can deal with riding in the rain, cold, and heat, nothing beats getting to work on your bike.
I love riding to work, don't get me wrongstinkfoot247
Dec 30, 2003 9:57 PM
My day is so much more better when I ride to work. I don't really care about not having a car. If I had a car, there is a real good chance I would still commute to work by bike. This is what I'm saying. Even if I were to apply at a restaraunt, they would give me crap about "reliable transportation." I'm sick of it.
Perhaps some construction people need to drive to different job sites. Perhaps. I'm talking general manual labor. Digging ditches and sweating dirt and sun poison. I don't see the need to be driving around through out the work day.
How about this. Take any job, non driving related. During the hiring process when the transportation question comes up- how do I convince them. What are your suggestions.
Hmmmm....shmoo
Dec 30, 2003 11:00 PM
Not sure what type of construction you're thinking about getting into but....

1. Having worked in the construction industry for some time, I can attest that construction workers without cars "tend" to be less than reliable, especially during foul weather. They usually pool with the other guys, but that gets old fast. It's totally frustrating as a project manager to schedule 10 guys on a job and only get 6. Profits grow wings. This may not be you, but it is the tendency. Hence, the industries reluctance to hire labor without cars.

2. It depends on the type of construction, but unless you're digg'n holes with the boss' shuvle, you generally don't just show up at a construction site and get handed the tools you need or borrow everbody elses. You BUY and OWN and are responsible for your own hand tools, tool bags, lunch box, etc, and you have to carry them to and from the jobsite. I know of cantractors that send their guys home without pay if they don't show with their own tools. And don't think you can leave them with one of your workmates, because those tools will be gone within a week. Do you really want to ride your bike dressed for construction (you got boots on, boy) and carrying your gear?

3. "So your next assignment is 40 miles away. Be there at 6:00 AM, 'cause we're start'n early. And, oh, by the way, you're all working 10hr days until we're done with this job".

4. You DON'T want to leave your bike at a construction site. It WILL get hammered or stolen in no time. And then you'll be hoofing it with all your stuff, and be out the bike too. You will probably have signed a release from liability of some sort, relieving your empoyer (or anybody else) from liabiltiy for your personal property, including your bike. (Not only do they want you to drive, but they want you to carry your own insurance).

Sounds like fun otherwise.
Hmmmm....Zogpound
Dec 31, 2003 6:29 AM
How bout lawn maintainence. Depending on where you live it may not be the right time of year but...They always seem to have a central location as a starting point. They provide the truck and epuipment to get from job to job. And finally, I don't believe they work in the rain. So you wouldn't have to ride in it.
Hmmmm....shmoo
Dec 31, 2003 6:52 AM
Sure. There are undoubtedly hundreds of specific situations where it could work, but generally not for typical kinds of construction. Most would not consider lawn maintenance "construction".

As far as work'n in the rain. Depends on the trade. Our boys would work in the rain until their electrical equipment started "talking back" to them (shocking them). Then, depending on the particualar construction and degree of completion they would move inside and continue working. As a contractor, you only shut it down when you have to. As in anything else in business, time is money, and schedules are always tight. You can't afford to shut it down.
Do you want to work...or ride your bike???biknben
Dec 31, 2003 6:42 AM
I used to work in construction (res. roofing and siding). Every few weeks I was haulin to a new location anywhere within an hour drive of home. I was responsible for my hand tools, util. belt, boots, etc. You simply can't do that on a bike. You would quickly become a burden to your employer and the relationship would sour. "Sorry no work for
i you
today!"

Is the employer discriminating or are you making life choices that prevent you from doing certain types of work?

FWIW: I commuted 140 days this year by bike. I'm on your side.
Agree--You don't need a car, but you need to show up w/toolsCory
Dec 31, 2003 9:03 AM
My family's been in the construction business for years, and my brother's still a contractor. I think biknben's nailed it: Nobody cares how you get there, but you do need to show up on time, with your tools, at a job that may move around quite a bit. If you can haul 50 pounds of crap 50 miles on a bike and be ready to work when the sun comes up, that's fine.
I'm on your side, too. But if somebody hires you to do a job, you've got to be able to do the job.
Yes, it is legal.Dropped
Dec 31, 2003 10:22 AM
An employer can basically discriminate against you for any reason, as long as that reason does not relate to your being in a legally protected category (and even then the application of the laws depends on the employers size).

A construction company can not hire you because you don't have a car, because they don't like your hair, or because then think you smell funny.

They cannot refuse to hire you because you are black, female, muslim, disabled, etc.
Discrimination is what employment ismhinman
Dec 31, 2003 10:46 AM
Some of the obvious, 3 years experience required, a college degree. etc. Disabled people can be discriminated against, where the ability to perform a job cannot be reasonable accomidated. UPS isn't going to hire you if you are in a wheelchair as a delivery person. Hooters has discriminated against ugly and overweight people (not PC but true and legal defendable). Modeling and acting agencies can discriminate on race and sex for example. That said, discriminating on an employee based on arbitrary critia that have nothing to do with an ability to do a job is morally wrong and illegal.
thanks for your input. nm.stinkfoot247
Dec 31, 2003 10:23 PM