Well. That’s that.

I got fired today.

I dragged my ass into work even though I was STILL having pain and bleeding profusely. I stepped out of my car at work and filled a pad and turned pale on the spot.
I staggered up the stairs to my desk after cleaning up in the bathroom and handing over the latest doctor’s note to HR.

I worked until 11am and was about to go on my scheduled lunch hour, when my new boss came up to me in a hurry, out of breath, and said that she needed to talk to me. I knew right then and there what it was about. She hesitated, and added, “It’s with HR” and looked really upset. I smirked. I said, “I know, I can tell. It’s okay.”

We walked next door and I felt like I was being led to jail. I looked everyone I passed in the eye, which is not characteristic of me. My hands literally felt bound by what was happening; I wasn’t allowed to talk to anyone, I had to report straight to HR. I couldn’t even say goodbye to the cow-orkers I like. Although my cubemate knew what was transpiring – he’s the guy with the chronic headaches – and BOY did he look pissed off. All I could do when I got up was give a pained look and mouth the words, “sorry, bye”.

I got into the meeting room where the HR lady was sitting. I was informed that I was being let go. My new boss sat next to me. I was told I’d exceeded my incidents. I asked for clarification. I wasn’t given clarification. So I said it in plain English: “I have been ABSENT from work too many times, that is what you mean by “incident”?”
The HR lady told me “yes”.

I had not even used up all my Paid Time Off days. But their policy, which was revamped in July, states that one must give 48 hours notice for any time off, and one cannot be absent more than three times in a 90-day period, unless one has a doctor’s note. In the case of a doctor’s note, one can be absent more than one day, and it shall count as an INCIDENT of absence, rather than 2 or more absences.
HOWEVER, if one incurs three INCIDENTS within 90 days, one can STILL be fired.

And so it was with me. I had reached my fourth INCIDENT of absence in 90 days. I explained to HR in front of my new boss that I have provided HR with a doctor’s note for every INCIDENT of absence, and that I’ve even provided a note from my surgeon, detailing that I have an INCURABLE STAGE III illness. The HR lady said she must do her job and follow procedure and yadda yadda, and that she can’t change policy just for me.

So here I was, being fired, despite my old manager telling me “I don’t think they’d fire you for this, they know it’s a health condition”, and my new manager telling me on Monday, “I’d think they’d be very careful to avoid firing you for having a health problem”.

Whoops!

So that’s that!
I was two workdays shy of having worked in that place for one year. I was afraid I’d walk out because I couldn’t take the sometimes weekly harrassment from HR. I’m so glad I didn’t have to walk. Those assholes have been stating for MONTHS that they want to fire me for missing work every month, and every month I say “even though I have a documented medical condition?” And they always nod grimly.

Now because of their deed, I have filed for unemployment, and I have an appointment with the labor board.

For my next career path, I will NOT be working in the dotcom field. I tried this last year and panicked and went back to dotcom after I had two REALLY bad experiences (The Internet Archive tried to fire me for having this same health condition but I quit rather than be humiliated, and then I worked for an optometrist in Oakland and got harrassed daily by a chick who detests white people and openly stated this on a regular basis). It’s so odd to me – prior to the Archive, in all my years of employment, I’d NEVER been discriminated against for any reason. Then BAM BAM BAM! The Archive, the optometrist and the dotcom job, all hatin’ on me.
Why you do this to me?

I will now try to look for work again, outside of the dotcom field. S’cuse me first while I take a short break from working at all. Hm, I can still make my trip to Michigan, can’t I? I had scheduled it last year to start .. well… today actually.
I’d have to put it on plastic, though. Hmmm. Probably not a wise idea.

One Response to “Well. That’s that.”

  1. patricia

    Well at least you are out of there! That place was sucking your soul away. I wish my fund raising campaign was closer to SF because then you could work for me in Novemeber. And I totally understand the need for time off!