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Allen M., Esq.
Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 19169
Experience:  Employment/Labor Law Litigation
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I was in a business trip in New Orleans. My co-workers left

Customer Question

I was in a business trip in New Orleans.
Two of my co-workers got into a fight. The one that was yelled at went to all of the employees present and talked to them about how co-worker 1 yelled at her. I got the attention of co-worker 1 and asked him to apologize to co-worker 2 because if he did not, it was my opinion that co-worker 2 would not apologize to him and would continue to talk about the incident to all of the employees.
Co-worker 1 then throws a pole that was in his hand, pulls out a pocket knife and makes 3 cuts into his left inner wrist. I begged him to not cut. He walked away angry and I let him go.
He came back into the area where we were and I explained that the reason I asked him to apologize is because co-worker 2 was not big enough to do it.
He went and apologized, in a very self-dreprecating fashion. Saying the he was sorry, he he knows he can be an ass at times and the he messes things up. Co-worker 2 saw the blood flowing out from his arm and pointed it out. Co-worker 1 leaves again.
Several times, the next day, co-worker one told me how afraid she was of co-worker 2 now that she knew he was a cutter. Saying that she was afraid of him now because he has a gun permit. And if he was fired, she would be very afraid that he would come in and cause harm to her.
On Tuesday, the co-workers I was traveling with, left me on the parking garage breezeway at 9:30 pm by myself. I had to return to the convention center by myself. I did get in the car with them because I had no cash or credit car to get a taxi. When I got in the car, I yelled at them, at a level I have never yelled before. They then pulled into a parking lot, of which I had no idea where I was due to coming down from the fear I had experienced. They exited the car, leaving me in there. I asked for the keys and I would come back for them. They got out, locked the door and left. I was sitting in a hot car, with no ability to roll down the windows. My only option was to open the door, leaving myself once again, open to the New Orleans world. I called the owner and they came and got me.
The owner had me get a hotel room by the airport s d book a flight home for the next day. We had traveled to New Orleans in the mini-can together and we're sharing a home together.
I have been told by the owner of the company that I will be receiving a write-up for cussing (which I did during my fearful anger yelling), being disrespectful to my co-workers because of my yelling and for causing dissension in the group because the entire thing started over me yelling co-worker 1 that co-worker 2 was not big enough to apologize.
In that conversation, the owner was trying to tell me that I was mad, not afraid. I stated that they are my feelings and that I was afraid. The previous night, I did go out in the mini-Van to an urgent care facilities (parked in the front spot), went to walgreens and went thru the drive-thru and then into Bourbon street, where I parked in a spot where I could see the shop I was going to. She was trying to say that if I was not afraid by doing these alone, that there was no way I was afraid when my co-workers were with me. As a matter of fact, when he brought it up again of me being alone, and I explained again, where I had parked at each stop and that I had the keys to the van, she actually said "well, we're beating a dead horse in this one"
Do I have any legal rights based on being out in what I perceived as an un-safe environment?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 2 years ago.
In these sorts of you situations, where there is not an actual physical injury to point to, there isn't any sort of legal act that you can take against the employer. Unfortunately, the law counts on the fear of liability for injuries to encourage employers to take more precautions with their employees, but until something actually happens the employer has no legal liabilities. The only true action you could take would be to attempt to set up being able to quit the job and seek unemployment. Your argument would be that the basis for quitting is a good cause attributable to the employer.