Can a organization that has 300 employees and only 200 get raises and the other’s don’t get anything regarding of there ratings?

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Can a organization that has 300 employees and only 200 get raises and the other’s don’t get anything regarding of there ratings?

This is a new process that we are now going through. This has upset a lot of employees especially the one’s that have a good working record. This whole process seems to be very unfair and not equally distributed.Can a non-profit government organization, Transit Authority, sales tax funded, not give raises who perform a satisfactory job be denied a raise?

Asked on June 5, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Texas

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Texas is an at-will employment state which means an employer can end or modify the employment relationship at any time.  Conversely, an employee can choose not to accept the terms of employment and leave.  This means that an employer can give one employee a raise and demote another employee for no reason, for downsizing, for cost savings, .... the only exception is that the modification or denial cannot be for an illegal purpose.  An illegal purpose would include purposeful discrimination against a protected class.  For example, if the 200 that got raises were all men, and the 100 that did not get raises were all women, this would certainly raise a claim of unfair treatment.  If the employer has come up with a new policy that many people don't like then that isn't enough.  The main thing is that the new policy provides the same opportunities for raises for all employees in the same situation or category.  For example, both men and women must have the same chance to perform and get the raise.  The fact that it's a state funded non-profit doesn't change this analysis-- but it does make them subject to a bit more scrutiny.  Whenever a non-profit or state agency receives federal funding they usually are required to have programs to avoid EEOC complaints.  Even if the policy is written to "look fair", if the resulting practice is to always deny a protected class the raise, the agency/employer could end up facing a discrimination complaint or funding issues.


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