Work Uniforms and Employee Rights
Whether for health and safety reasons, or to promote a company brand and professionalism, some jobs require their employees to wear a work uniform. And while each state’s labor laws dictate exactly what an employer may and may not require of their employees, in regard to their uniform selection, there are many rules that span across the board when it comes to work clothing.
For example, any employer can generally require any kind of employee to wear a uniform or stick to a dress code. This includes full and part time employees, regardless of their field or position. Here’s a look at some other basic rules regarding work uniforms:
Payment of Uniforms
Generally speaking, state laws dictate that employers must pay for specific work uniforms, including those with branding or company logos. On the other hand, employees are responsible for general work clothing on their own. In other words, an employee should buy their own dress shirts and ties, scrubs, or blue tee shirts, if that’s what is asked by the employer. But if the company requires scrubs with the doctor’s name and address on the front, or a button down shirt with the company logo over the chest, that falls under the employer’s responsibility to purchase.
Even when an employee has the right to a free uniform from their employer, they are still responsible for keeping their work clothing clean and in good condition. Because a uniform takes the place of general work clothing, it remains on the employee’s shoulders to maintain their uniforms. Depending on the state, some employers who use uniform services may also charge their employees for the weekly maintenance.Security Deposits
In general, an employer is also allowed to collect a security deposit from their employees for any work uniforms they provide. This deposit covers the cost of replacement, in the event that an employee loses or fails to return their work clothing.