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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 116755
Experience:  20+ Years of Employment Law Experience
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I worked for KC Metro till 5/02/2016 from 10/18/2010, I was

Customer Question

I worked for KC Metro till 5/02/2016 from 10/18/2010, I was working swing shift from 2:30pm-11:00pm. I have been working overtime roughly 2-3 days a week for 2hrs a day (start at 12:30). On February 10th, 2016, I came to work and was doing my job when the Day Shift Lead started accusing me of disrespecting him and it was his shift. The lead called in the chief who is both of our boss and proceeded to allow the lead to make claims of me doing this kind of actions on purpose. The lead said he was going to have me dealt with and taken care of. He also accused me of using a calming technique (closing my eyes, breathing deep and smiling to myself ( I was not facing Mark and was about 12' away from him) and saying it's alright) as a sign of disrespect and commented to me...Yea, keep it up, see where it gets you. I walked away from him, only to have him come at me and stand in the only doorway to the room and harass me more. The chief entered the room and allowed the lead to vent, he was swearing that he is the fing lead, he's tired of this shit and he deserves respect and is going to get it. The chief standing in half the doorway while the lead standing in the other half with his chest out and angry look on my face, proceeded to ask me what was going on. I was not given the right to answer or explain anything because the lead kept interrupting me. I walked up to them and told the lead to shut the f up and stop interrupting me. We exchanged some more words, the chief was just standing there, didn't say anything, didn't tell the lead to back off, or leave me alone, nothing. When I told the lead a 2nd time "stop interrupting me, the chief reached out, very angry, grabbed a fist full of my shirt at the chest and tugged on it, Saying...That's it Kevin, you're coming with me right now! his hand came free, he then reached around me with both arms and picked me up a little off the floor, then he let me go real quick and then latched both arms around my right elbow, pinned it against his chest, jerked me down and proceeded to drag me out of the shop by my arm, about 15'-20'. the report read that I escalated the situation so that the Chief thought I was going to punch my coworker. I never had any intention of touching the lead, I was simply trying to communicate with him so I could talk with the chief. I have a pacemaker and so when I get upset, feel threatened, scared, anxiety, etc. my pacemaker automatically kicks in to reach 200 BPM and it takes me a long while to get back to normal heart rate. The chief overreacted and assaulted me, and I did file an assault charge against him on February 12th, 2016, which was dropped by the prosecutors office. Do I have a case of wrongful termination/Unfair Employment actions (according to Civil Rights & Open Government Laws) against KC Metro?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 11 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Under the laws, wrongful termination occurs if you were terminated based only on your age/race/sex/disability/national origin. What you describe above is a verbal altercation with a supervisor, which can be deemed insubordination, especially if you told him what you said above. Your only recourse in this type of case would be under your union contract, because you did not provide any information to show that the reason your supervisor was treating you this way was based only on your age/race/sex/disability/national origin.
If you do have evidence it was based only on your age/race/sex/disability/national origin that he was treating you this way, then you need to file a complaint with the EEOC and they have to investigate and grant you a right to sue letter for you to proceed to court against the employer.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I was 43 yrs old at the time of the incident, I am at least 10 years younger than the lead and about 20 years younger than others in the shop. There is an Asian American, Female and 4 Caucasians in the group, and I am being told I am not a protected class, yet white, male is a race, sex. So you are telling me he has the right to put his hands on me and assume my actions (sometime in the future) might lead to physical altercation, even though I was being bullied, threatened and physically attacked?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 11 months ago.
Thank you for your reply.
But nothing you said indicates your age/race/sex/disability/national origin were the only reason for the treatment. Interestingly, contrary to what people believe, the US Supreme Court has clearly stated that the laws on workplace harassment (bullying) were enacted to protect employees from conduct based solely on the age/race/sex/disability/national origin of the employee and Congress never intended to create a code of civility in the workplace (See: Oncale v. Sundowner Offshore Services, 523 U.S. 75 (1998)).
So, you can sue for being physically attacked for any emotional and physical injury (that is not a wrongful termination suit) and you can pursue your grievance through the union for the termination as well.