How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Phillips Esq. Your Own Question
Phillips Esq.
Phillips Esq., Attorney-at-Law
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 17537
Experience:  B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
16551887
Type Your Employment Law Question Here...
Phillips Esq. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My wife works 2nd Class Township in Pennsylvania. The

Customer Question

My wife works for a 2nd Class Township in Pennsylvania. The Township Secretary Treasurer is also an elected Township Supervisor (Both an Employee and Chairperson of Board of Supervisors). My wife was interviewed by the Townships Labor Attorneys numerous times relative to an investigation involving the now Former Police Chief. He was using derogatory terms towards people. She was always interviewed and then placed back at the Police Department (Police Dept Secretary) to work with the former Chief, who knew she was being interviewed about him, without any real protection. My wife complained that she was being placed in Hostile Work Environment. The Chief then later retired. My wife and I expressed our displeasure with the Elected Supervisors for my wife's treatment.
All Township Employees and Elected Supervisors were then made to attend diversity training which all types of harassment were addressed (Political Harassment included)
The Supervisor who is also the Township Secretary Treasurer was then up for re-election. I had a conversation with the Township Tax Collector who had come to my residence for me to sign her Election Petition. She asked me about the supervisor running for re-election and I advised that I would not vote for any of the current supervisors due to my wife's treatment. The tax collector previously worked out of the Township building and is aware to this Supervisors past behaviors. The next day, my Wife was berated by this Supervisor and was informed that I was part of a public group trying to unseat her. This Supervisor had an individual running against her in the election. Three days later, this Supervisor again berated my wife and advised her that my Wife's Mother had signed the petition of the person running against her. My wife explained that she has no control over who i or her parents support in any election. This supervisor advised my wife that she no longer trusts my wife and has since treated her poorly. My wife contacted her union (AFSCME) and requested that a grievance be filed due to the political issues. The supervisor came to my wife's officer and told her that she was sorry for her actions but "couldn't guarantee that it would not happen again". Her union refused to file a grievance and told my wife that the supervisor said sorry so all is ok. My wife expressed that she wanted something in writing because if the supervisor continued with poor treatment, she wanted documentation. Again, AFSCME did nothing. The supervisor then began to follow my wife's movements on the building cameras and asked another employee what my wife was doing and talking about with other employees.
Since AFSCME did nothing, my wife and I had our personal attorney send the supervisor a "cease and desist" letter to document and curb the behavior. The letter states that the supervisor was infringing on my wife's personal rights. Our personal attorney does not deal in employment or labor law. The supervisor has since lost the election but will remain as an employee after January of 2016. Since the letter was received, my wife has since been interviewed twice by an attorney from the township's labor attorney firm, who states that she is not acting as an attorney. My wife requested that our personal attorney be present since this action was brought on by a letter from our personal attorney. My wife was told that our personal attorney is not permitted to be present and that her union represents her because of it being a labor problem.
I understand that when you join a Union, you give up some rights as an employee. The "cease and desist" letter came from our personal attorney due to the union lack of action and discusses my wife's "personal rights" as an American Citizen. Each time she was interviewed, she put on the record that she was present under duress and that she wanted our personal attorney present, not a union representative.
I feel my wife's rights are being violated and she is being denied right to due process. Looking for opinion and maybe some direction.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Phillips Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Hello: This isCustomer I am a licensed Attorney and I will be assisting you today.
My wife works for a 2nd Class Township in Pennsylvania. The Township Secretary Treasurer is also an elected Township Supervisor (Both an Employee and Chairperson of Board of Supervisors). My wife was interviewed by the Townships Labor Attorneys numerous times relative to an investigation involving the now Former Police Chief. He was using derogatory terms towards people. She was always interviewed and then placed back at the Police Department (Police Dept Secretary) to work with the former Chief, who knew she was being interviewed about him, without any real protection. My wife complained that she was being placed in Hostile Work Environment. The Chief then later retired. My wife and I expressed our displeasure with the Elected Supervisors for my wife's treatment.
All Township Employees and Elected Supervisors were then made to attend diversity training which all types of harassment were addressed (Political Harassment included)
The Supervisor who is also the Township Secretary Treasurer was then up for re-election. I had a conversation with the Township Tax Collector who had come to my residence for me to sign her Election Petition. She asked me about the supervisor running for re-election and I advised that I would not vote for any of the current supervisors due to my wife's treatment. The tax collector previously worked out of the Township building and is aware to this Supervisors past behaviors. The next day, my Wife was berated by this Supervisor and was informed that I was part of a public group trying to unseat her. This Supervisor had an individual running against her in the election. Three days later, this Supervisor again berated my wife and advised her that my Wife's Mother had signed the petition of the person running against her. My wife explained that she has no control over who i or her parents support in any election. This supervisor advised my wife that she no longer trusts my wife and has since treated her poorly. My wife contacted her union (AFSCME) and requested that a grievance be filed due to the political issues. The supervisor came to my wife's officer and told her that she was sorry for her actions but "couldn't guarantee that it would not happen again". Her union refused to file a grievance and told my wife that the supervisor said sorry so all is ok. My wife expressed that she wanted something in writing because if the supervisor continued with poor treatment, she wanted documentation. Again, AFSCME did nothing. The supervisor then began to follow my wife's movements on the building cameras and asked another employee what my wife was doing and talking about with other employees.
Since AFSCME did nothing, my wife and I had our personal attorney send the supervisor a "cease and desist" letter to document and curb the behavior. The letter states that the supervisor was infringing on my wife's personal rights. Our personal attorney does not deal in employment or labor law. The supervisor has since lost the election but will remain as an employee after January of 2016. Since the letter was received, my wife has since been interviewed twice by an attorney from the township's labor attorney firm, who states that she is not acting as an attorney. My wife requested that our personal attorney be present since this action was brought on by a letter from our personal attorney. My wife was told that our personal attorney is not permitted to be present and that her union represents her because of it being a labor problem.
I understand that when you join a Union, you give up some rights as an employee. The "cease and desist" letter came from our personal attorney due to the union lack of action and discusses my wife's "personal rights" as an American Citizen. Each time she was interviewed, she put on the record that she was present under duress and that she wanted our personal attorney present, not a union representative.
I feel my wife's rights are being violated and she is being denied right to due process. Looking for opinion and maybe some direction.

Response: Your wife is being prosecuted here for political reasons.
If she is being interviewed because of a letter written by her private Attorney, the private Attorney needs to be present to explain the grounds for the letter. Also, the "township's labor attorney firm," IS representing the township despite what he says. If the township's Attorney is present, your wife's private Attorney should be present since the Union has failed and refused to protect her interests.
Your wife may consider filing complaint with National Labor Relations Board against the Union for failure to protect her and act on her behalf to prevent political harassment and intimidation. Click on the link below for more information on the complaint process.
http://www.nlrb.gov/what-we-do/investigate-charges
Your wife may also go to your local news media to shine a light on this harassment and intimidation. She may also use social media to try to put pressure on the authorities to stop this harassment. If using social media, she needs to make sure that ALL her postings are accurate and not misleading in any way shape or form. Otherwise, she would be at risk of defamation claim.

Related Employment Law Questions