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I was dismissed with (as the employer recorded) no fault of…

I was dismissed with...

I was dismissed with (as the employer recorded) no fault of my own. There is a lot of back story, the biggest being not honoring my employment contract. I could have quit and claimed constructive dismissal and would have been totally in the right.....anyway, now they want me to sign a non-disclosure agreement and are offering me $1,000 for my silence.

Lawyer's Assistant: Because employment law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?

BC Canada

Lawyer's Assistant: Is the employment agreement "at will," union, full time or part time?

Not sure what “at will” means, but I was full time and it was not Union.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I was “dismissed” because the emotional distress of being screwed on my contract, coupled with a supervisor who I believe railroaded me, caused me to run my mouth and say disparaging things, some were an exaggeration of the truth, but not outright malicious.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
That’s not overly helpful
Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I was hired in August 2017, with a start date of Sept. 5, 2017. I was given a contract that started at one lower paying position until January 8, 208 at which time I was to be sent for additional training and receive a wage increase of over $7 per hour and work part time assisting in the position of Resource Social Worker. It became apparent to me in late December, 2017 that the agency did not have the intention of honoring my contract. At this point I will add that I suffer from Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Major Depressive Disorder and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, largely in the wake of the death of our infant son Matthew in 2009. Due to these mental health issues, particularly anxiety, I wanted to quit and seemingly would have had grounds to, but didn't because of the same aforementioned conditions.Working in this position I had a direct supervisor who micromanaged me to death and made my job unbearable at times, even pushing me to do what I now know to be unethical things.I had brought my concerns of both the unfulfilled clauses of my contract, as well as my supervisor's unethical behavior to the Executive Director on a few occasions with no resolution. It just felt like she wasn't interested in dealing with it. On February 9th, on the verge of a nervous breakdown I demanded a private meeting to discuss my working conditions with the Executive Director, which she granted. At that time, I felt heard, but she said we would not discuss it any further until my supervisor was back from her vacation in Mexico.My supervisor returned from her vacation on February 19th and seemed to avoid me for the remainder of that week, although on her return it was announced that she was demoted to a lesser position in the agency. Likely due to what I had shared with the executive director.February 21st is the anniversary of the birth and death of my son, and although it's been 9 years, this time of year, the week between his birthday and funeral date February 28th still wreaks havoc on my mental well being.
February 23rd, things came to a head. The position that I was to have taken over part time in January, Resource Social Worker, the woman who was doing it full time resigned and the position became available. And instead of coming to me with the position, which I was hired to do, they posted it internally to all employees. A genuine slap in the face. Via email I demanded a meeting with both my supervisor and the executive director to discuss this.I had worked overtime that day, the 23rd, and was physically and emotionally exhausted from the family group conference I had just facilitated, from the emotional exhaustion of the week of my son's death, and from the outright disgust with how I had been treated in my working arrangement. I was approached at 5:30 PM to have a meeting with my supervisor and my executive director.To be honest, I don't remember the finite details of this meeting, except that I was getting a raise, and far more than I was asking for, and not retroactive to January, but to my start date of Sept. 5, 2017. It felt like hush money, and in retrospect evidently it was supposed to be.In the wake of this meeting, I shared this experience with a hand full of people, some co-workers, some friends and some family members. Given how overwhelmingly exhausting and emotional this situation was, I needed to vent. I may have said some disparaging things, but I needed to get this off my chest, it had been festering like a cancer for 2 months and I had just won. Vindicated if you.will. Were some of the things I said foolish? Probably. But, I don't even know what, or how these things got back to management.February 28th, the anniversary of the second worst day of my life, the day I buried my son, I was at work, it was wellness day. A day where as an office we work on team building through fun, relaxing activities. I was just trying to remain upbeat and not lose my mind with grief when I get told by my supervisor that my executive director wants to talk to me in her office. It was rather kafkaesque. I wasn't even told why I was there other than "I need complete honesty from you Amery".I was sequestered in one of the interview rooms where they take parents who are suspected of child abuse, it was morally degrading. The ED and my supervisor came in and out a few times, asking things like have you read the employee policy manual, etc. Ironically, we had all our copies of said manual collected from us in early December because there was supposedly a revision being made, and they were never returned to us. But I digress.I don't even remember all that she asked me, but there were a lot of open ended questions that I didn't even know what she was alluding to.Towards the conclusion of this time she made specific reference to some wording that I had used in a facebook message with a few different people.
Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Things like I had said that they approached me sheepishly, and that the ED had berated my supervisor, which I felt that she did, and that I had talked about quitting. Now, I don't believe any of these are grounds for dismissal. I shouldn't have run my mouth, but I also was not anywhere near in a good frame of mind all week, and they knew this. One thing I remember distinctly though is that she said "I don't know how we can salvage trust in our working relationship moving forward, we're going to have to let you go today."Prior to this I had not had any disciplinary action, if anything I was an exemplary employee. This is reflected in my probationary employee review done in December. I do recall that the employee manual does state a policy of verbal and written warnings prior to dismissal. This did not happen.In my letter of termination it states that I was dismissed without fault and they are even paying me severance, plus the offer of the additional $1,000 to stay silent.This ordeal has kicked my depression and anxiety in to high gear. I have not taken medication on a regular basis in years, and I fear that this is pushing me to the brink.If I had any self-confidence, I should have quit a month ago and I would have absolutely had a case for constructive dismissal. As it is, they still did not honor the contract that I signed up for. At the same time that I accepted this job, I was also shortlisted for a position with Interior Health. Higher pay, but it would have meant commuting to Kamloops on a daily basis. I turned down that opportunity based on the assurances that were promised to me in my offer letter and never followed though on. Clearly a breach of Section 8 of the employment standards act.Anyway, as I said, I have the 16th as a deadline for this non-disclosure agreement. Any interim advice would be helpful. Do I sign and take the $1,000 and try and move on with my life, knowing that employment prospects here in Merritt are few and far between, or do I have a case.
Answered in 23 hours by:
3/12/2018
Debra
Debra, Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
Satisfied Customers: 105,602
Experience: Lawyer
Verified

I am a lawyer in Canada and happy to help. The former expert was in the US so please disregard their information. I am sorry they answered.

I am also sorry to hear of this difficult situation.

Did they lure you away from another job?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I was lured away from another job offer, yes. At the time I signed on for this job, I was shortlisted for a Social Worker position with Interior Health in Kamloops, which I turned down based on the offer I received from my now former employer.

Did they know this?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I think so. I definitely brought this up in trying to get them to honor my contract.
Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I am almost 100% certain that that is why I told the Executive Director I needed a few days to consider the offer. The job I took was considerably lesser pay initially, but was to rise significantly in January, but it never did. Even then is was still a lesser wage, but based on how much closer this job was I took it. Big mistake in retrospect

Essentially, if there was no luring away then you would simply be treated as if you had been working for this employer for a very short time. You would be entitled to only one week's pay in lieu of notice.

But if you were lured away from another position because you relied on promises that they failed to adhere to you could be entitled to considerably more damages than the one week's pay.

For this reason it would make sense to retain a lawyer to threaten a lawsuit for wrongful dismissal rather than simply take the pay off and walk away.

Does that make sense?

You can contact the BC Branch of the Canadian Bar Association and use their Lawyer Referral Service. You will be given the name of a lawyer and can consult with the lawyer and the first half hour will be $25.

The number is:
(###) ###-####or 1.***-***-****.

Please feel free to post back with any follow-up questions you may have. If you don't have any then I hope I have earned a 5 star rating but if you don't feel that I have please don't hesitate to reply back and let me know what more I can do to assist you. Finally, please know that even after you rate me I will be here for you and you can ask follow-up questions if you think of them later on at no further charge of course.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
But they also blatantly breached Section 8 of the Employment Standards Act which states of False Representations;8 An employer must not induce, influence or persuade a person to become an employee, or to work or to be available for work, by misrepresenting any of the following:
(a) the availability of a position;
(b) the type of work;
(c) the wages;
(d) the conditions of employment.The position they hired me for which was laid out in my contract, and the wage associated with it never materialized. I was duped. It was only at my dismissal that I had it it explained to me that “we thought we might need a position like that”

Yes that is all correct and you will get higher damages as a result.

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Is there anything more I can help you with at this point in time?

Debra
Debra, Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
Satisfied Customers: 105,602
Experience: Lawyer
Verified
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