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Ask Legalease Your Own Question
Legalease, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 16226
Experience:  13 years experience in employment law, unions, contracts, workers comp law
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Am unsure to whom I should address these questions...I'm a

Customer Question

Am unsure to whom I should address these questions...I'm a female , approx. 8 months from retirement. currently on an intermittent FMLA due to my husband's rare aggressive cancer. he was diagnosed in Jan 2016. I took the leave in Feb. I am an register nurse working in a community hospital in Phila. This week I was approached by my manager and was told I will need to sign a paper that I ''put the unit at risk by leaving them short handed''..''I'm at fault for not updating my PALS credentials''. I was not allowed to work until that was completed. Took 2 weeks, you have to set up with a class that offers it. I did not receive any warning that the PALS was soon to expire. There were other , at least one young male who allowed his PALS to expire, but he currently has no repercussions. In those 2wks , I had 2 events with my husband, where he went to HUP for urgent transfusion; and an admission for sepsis[overwhelming blood infection]. I did notify the nursing office that I am using FMLA days for these events. Now , my manager has a set up time to meet with the hospital's HR manager for me to sign a paper [written warning] that I have been counselled; the next step I assume would be termination. With this nursing manage , our unit has terminated several employees in the last 6 to 7 mos.; both male and females in mid fifty age group.
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Legalease replied 3 months ago.

Hello there --


You put in all the correct paperwork for the intermittent FMLA leave and the time you have taken off has all been a part of this leave?



Customer: replied 3 months ago.
FMLA paperwork is correct and has been approved. I was requested to meet with and sign a written warning by my nurse manager and HR person because I had let my PALS certification expire; ""therefore I put the unit in risk''[ It took 2 weeks to find a location and arrange for this certification. I do not wish to sign anything. I have always been a model worker for approx. 30+yrs in this facility. Am I allowed to view my personel file and take a copy of this form home with me before I sign/ have someone view with me? What exactly are they saying??There were several coworkers with expired creditials. I believe that did not get notified to sign a paper and did continue to work. Am I being discriminated or bullied due to my age? I am approx. 7 months from retirement[ depends on husband's condition/bills]
Expert:  Legalease replied 3 months ago.

Hello again --


If you have the names of the other employees who did not have their PALS certification and you are fairly certain that none of them were given written warnings and most of them were in the under 50 years of age group, then you could be correct that they may be discriminating against you due to your age (over 40)) or they may be discriminating against you because you are taking this intermittent FMLA leave to care for your husband (or it could be a combination of both your age and the FMLA leave that is annoying your employer). My suggestion to deal with this situation is that you contact both the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") and the US Dept of Labor and file complaints against your employer with both agencies. The EEOC enforces any age discrimination complaints that may be a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act which prohibits discrimination in employment against employees due to their age (over 40), gender, race/national origin, disability, religion or sexual orientation. Here is a link to their website where you can get instructions and assistance with filing an FMLA complaint against the employer: Finally, The US Dept of Labor addresses complaints from employees who claim that the employer is discriminating against them due to the fact that they must take FMLA to take care of their own medical issues or the medical issues of a close family member. Here is a link to the Dept of Labor wage and hour division complaint instruction and forms website --


Regarding the second question - about personnel records in PA and whether or not you must sign a copy of any warning issued to you. First, they cannot force you to sign a warning but they can still place it into your personnel folder with a notation that you read the warning but would not sign the warning. Second, the PA Personnel file Act permits an employee to review their own employment file once per year at a current employer (it does not yet include a provision for a former employee to view their personnel records). As a current employee you have the right to view the personnel file and take notes but they do not have to give you copies of anything and in order to do so, you must put the request in writing to the appropriate person in your company (usually human resources).


Finally, you can refuse to sign the warning with a blanket signature and instead write something like "employee has read the warning but does not agree with the facts and basis of the warning" and then sign and date under that statement. That way you are actually cooperating with the employer's procedures but you are not admitting to any wrongdoing. Doing it that way will help you in any EEOC and/or Labor Board hearing or action and any possible lawsuit that you might bring against the employer at a later date.


Please let me know if you have any further questions. If not, can you please press a positive rating above in the star ratings section before leaving the web page tonight. I am paid nothing unless you press the middle star or the fourth or fifth star to the right of the middle star above. THANK YOU VERY MUCH !!

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