It all began with a phone call from LJ. He’s been very unhappy with his job. This was a job he sought with great enthusiasm a couple of years ago and he was so very happy to get it. But sadly, it didn’t work out as he’d hoped. It began well enough, but once the park was up and going every department’s budget was slashed nearly in half and LJ has struggled to make it work. But he no longer had the funds to hire enough people to make the park run smoothly and safely.
His supervisor will not take any of LJ suggestion or acknowledge the boys experience in running a raised park. After giving it much thought my boys began a job search, feeling he just couldn’t stay on past this summer if things didn’t change.
Last week he and his supervisor got into a verbal argument. The man was saying, “It looks to me like you have plenty of people out here to do the job.
LJ explained that yes he did, but that several would soon be taking their breaks and he would be very short handed.
Supervisor: Why do they have to take breaks?
Probably after giving him an incredulous look, LJ answered.
LJ: Because they need breaks after standing in the freezing cold, or the hot sun. Because it’s written in our policy handbook and because legally, we are required to give them breaks.
They went back and forth a bit, the supervisor saying they didn’t really need breaks and they should be cut out and LJ trying to protect his team and adhere to their policies and the law. Finally, LJ walked away. Later that same day people from LJ's staff came to him to tell him the supervisor was talking to others saying unkind and false thing about LJ.
At that point LJ contacted human resources and asked for a meeting for this past Monday. Monday morning came and HR requested that the meeting be moved to Tuesday afternoon. LJ said fine. Tuesday morning, before the scheduled meeting, LJ was called to the supervisor’s office and fired.
LJ’s never been fired from any job before. At The High Line he was promoted five times in ten years. He's pretty much in shock. He definitely wanted to leave, but he planned to have a job first. NYC is not a place you can live without a job.
Because this all seems a little shady –
· boss asked you to do something illegal
· you refuse and ask to speak with HR
· before you can have that meeting you’re fired
LJ is talking with a lawyer. He’s not interested in suing for millions, but he was given one month’s severance and he feel four months would be fair. We are not the 'suing people' type and lawyers are foreign to us. But I think he will try to get the lawyer to put all of this into a letter to the company showing them how it looks and perhaps they will be fair.
LJ told me about all this on Saturday, he said, “Sorry Mom, I would have told you sooner but it happened on the same day at the school shooting and I didn’t want to throw any more on you.”
I will take any good thoughts or prayers that you might have for him to find a good job soon. At least they are not paying rent at the moment. You can read about that here. The owner has done nothing and they are still paying no rent.