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socrateaser
socrateaser, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 38911
Experience:  Retired (mostly)
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Hi - A few years back, working per diem at a home health agency,

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Hi - A few years back, working per diem at a home health agency, where I had worked for five years, I was told I needed to sign up for mandatory weekend work in advance. I balked at this for two reasons: I was per diem which generally means "I tell you when I can and will work." Secondly I was a stellar employee (I have yearly evaluations to prove it as well as community references from their clients) who often jumped to fill in on weekends when necessary. They refused to negotiate with me. Despite making what I thought was a good case, I was fired. I refused to just quit on principle. Several months later, another professional employee walked out and, when he explained the weekend issue had become a problem for him, they fell all over themselves telling him they would have negotiated with him. I let it all go. Until last night, I was having dinner with a friend/colleague in the business and she told me that when we went to a job fair and applied at the company booth, the woman who was my supervisor saw my name on her application, pointed to it and stated "Are you sure you want to use her as a reference?" My friend (also a veteran in the business) was shocked and replied of course. She received a letter thank her but no thanks, XXXXX XXXXX many years of experience and their desperate need for skilled clinicians. It seems to me that the previous supervisor should not be able to insinuate that by associating with me that my peers in the community are at risk for not being hired. I have done nothing wrong or illegal, indeed when I explain to professional peers that I was per diem when this happen they just shake their heads. Everyone know what per diem means in the business. My question: it is worth my time to contact HR department, explain that this happened and ask that they cease and desist, or whatever the legal term is? Should I get a lawyer to do this? I specifically want the supervisor in question to understand that my 30 year reputation is on the line here. Thanks - Mary
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  socrateaser replied 5 years ago.
My question: it is worth my time to contact HR department, explain that this happened and ask that they cease and desist, or whatever the legal term is? Should I get a lawyer to do this? I specifically want the supervisor in question to understand that my 30 year reputation is on the line here.

A: If your goal is to put the employer on notice that you are outraged by the defamatory remark of their employee at the job fair, then you can certainly do that. I would be careful not to claim outright that the former supervisor said anything in particular, because it could be turned around into a defamation lawsuit against you. And, while you may be able to prove what actually occurred, defending a defamation lawsuit can be quit expensive. So, think carefully about whether or not you want to open this pandora's box.

I do understand your annoyance -- but, I don't want to see you get into trouble. If you really believe that this is worth suing over, then I suggest you contact a civil litigation attorney, and let him/her write the letter on your behalf.

For a referral, see this link.

Hope this helps.

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