Vanessa mentioned that she pays $45 per month to have a separate work phone and that her boss knows not to text her personal number.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on March 3, 2023. It has since been updated.
It's difficult enough to balance work and personal life, but when your boss continues to text you while you're off the clock, it's the final straw. Businesses provide you with a work email and sometimes a separate work number to respect your boundaries and privacy. But, some bosses follow the rules and keep messaging you on your personal number. This is why Vanessa (@wealthxlab) blocked her boss' number. In a video that has garnered over 1.3 million views, Vanessa explains that her boss kept contacting her when she was off sick. "I just blocked my boss so he couldn't contact me while I wasn't at work," she said.
"I'm at home, sick from work today, and for some reason, he felt the need to text me about work tasks," she said in the video. She mentioned that she pays $45 (CAD) per month to have a separate work phone and that he knows not to text her number, but added that "he still does sometimes."
"So today I blocked him," the TikTok user then gave a thumbs up to the camera and added the text inlay on the screen "*Life Hacks*". She wrote the same affirmation in her caption saying, "Life hack. Block everyone who texts you." This helpful piece of advice caused her video to receive many comments from people who supported her decision to block her boss.
"I don’t blame you, he’s not your friend and you’re not working," said @rachieboo29. "Girl, all of the mine blocked because they don’t respect anyone’s boundaries. Love to see it!" wrote @bettercece_me. Many users shared their own experiences at work. "I blocked someone from work who contacted me on a sick day and when I said this is my number don't use it he said I couldn't get hold of you," added @emotionalheimlich. "My boss does this with certain coworkers. They know not to text/call me about work-related tasks," chimed @oohdarlingkat. A user named @genx.potatolover said that it is "illegal to contact employees outside work hours in Ontario, Canada." Which is indeed true. According to Blogto, the provincial government passed the Working for Workers Act in December 2021. The act was first proposed in October of the same year.
The act aims to create a better balance between work and professional life and give people the "right to disconnect." The concept has been widely appreciated in North America and has already inspired legislation in France, Italy, and Spain before the pandemic. Ontario wants to keep labor laws at "pace with the acceleration of new technology, automation and remote work," says Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. "We have introduced measures to make it easier to spend time with family and loved ones, requiring most workplaces have a right to disconnect policy," McNaughton said.
Ontario passed the Working for Workers Act, 2021, which voids contractual non-competition obligations for Ontario-based employees (with the exception of C-level execs and for sellers in a sale of a company). No other province has similar legislation (yet).— World needs m🍁re Canada (@julialxv) August 5, 2022
Moreover, the act requires employers with 25 or more employees to have a written policy about disconnecting from their job at the end of the workday so that they can spend quality time with their families. There is also a ban on non-compete agreements that can prevent people from exploring other work opportunities so that workers can smoothly excel in their career paths. "This legislation is another step towards building back a better province and cementing Ontario’s position as a global leader, for others to follow, as the best place in the world to live, work and raise a family," McNaughton said.