Being fired for my beliefs
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14-09-2012, 10:21 AM
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
(14-09-2012 10:06 AM)BnW Wrote:  Being an "at will" employee does not mean you can be fired for discriminatory reasons.

Yeah, but even if he wasn't reprimanded in any way at any time, he can still be fired for any reason just as long as it's not discriminatory. Even though it was for discriminatory reason, the company can basically say anything under the sun for termination. At will allows this.

Edit: As a side note, at will employment is the biggest load of crap. It's horrible.

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14-09-2012, 10:25 AM (This post was last modified: 14-09-2012 10:53 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
(14-09-2012 10:13 AM)ravnwolf Wrote:  Thank you for all the suggestions. They didn't fight the unemployment, but they pretty much ruined my life. That's the part I want them to pay for so they'll understand that they can't just do what they want and not have consequences. They do have a handbook. Unfortunately, they required it back before they would give me my last check, so I can't verify their process. I do recall there being a process, I just can't remember how detailed it was in regards to disciplinary action, improvement, etc.

Trying to find a lawyer is my problem. I put in a call for one in the Atlanta area several weeks back, but he never called me back. I certainly don't want to use anyone around here. I'm pretty confident they would be biased.

I've specifically made an effort not to mention their name in any social networking arenas because this is somewhat of a small town (15k city, 35k county-wide). My gut wants to come out swinging and tear them down, but I'm pretty confident that would only serve to destroy what little dignity I have left.

Thanks again for all of your suggestions.

There have to be a number of lawyers in Atlanta. Getting the manual is easy. They can subpoena it, for any proceeding. As far as bias goes, (in a city as big as Atlanta, it shouldn't be a problem), the $$$ signs in the lawyer's eyes, will trump the social stigma business. There have to be lawyers in Atlanta that would at least talk to you.

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14-09-2012, 10:25 AM
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
(14-09-2012 09:27 AM)ravnwolf Wrote:  Or actually I suppose I should say my lack thereof. I'm not sure if this is the correct category to put this, so if it needs to move, please do so moderator(s). Smile

So, here's my story --

I've worked in a particular field for almost 13 years, with the last 2.75 years being with a company that purchased the previous company I was working for. I was in upper management - the General Manager of this particular subsidiary, as a matter of fact.

Most people that I've worked with for years know my stance on religion, etc. but I've never been one to push it in their faces that they were wasting their time believing in fairy tales. A very good friend of mine, I'd say my best friend - he and I would have spirited debates about the topics. He's a believer, even though he'll tell you he's the worst kind. He knows and believes but doesn't live the way he should, etc.

As I've stated in my introduction post, I'm from South Georgia.

So, one day back in July, I walked into my office and was summoned to the main office. I didn't think anything of it because I routinely would need to go across town to the main office for this and that. So, when I get there, the VP of the company, who is very religious (I say this because he keeps an open bible on his desk at all times), was composing an email and asked me to give him a few minutes.

A few minutes went by and then he lowered the boom on me. The owner of the company had instructed him to terminate me effective immediately. Of course I was shocked! I had never had any disciplinary action with this company or even the company that owned the business before! I asked why.

He did look very sad, but he said the only thing he was instructed to say to me from the owner of the company was "you know what you did". And that was it. Dumbfounded doesn't even begin to describe how I felt.

Without rhyme or reason, I was tossed out. Even the official termination letter simply stated "terminated due to cause". Which, I understand this being the great state of Georgia, a company doesn't need a reason to terminate someone.

I've been banging my head back and forth trying to figure out what the hell happened. And then earlier this week, my good friend that still works there, let me know that there was a rumor - now mind you it's a rumor - but the rumor indicated that my connection to a website that I run (http://www.thesouthernatheist.com) might have been the reason for my dismissal. The funny thing is, I don't do that much with the site. I re-post some of Seth's videos there and other stuff, but it's mostly dormant.

I do run a podcast network of shows, none of them really related to anything religious in nature, but I don't make any bones about what I do and don't believe in my shows.

So, without any real proof, I've been bouncing the idea around of filing a charge with the EEOC for religious bias or whatever against my former employer. I don't want the job back, but I want these folks to know that you can't just arbitrarily (or at least you shouldn't be able to) get rid of someone because they don't believe the same way you do. The owners of the company are all about appearances.

What do you guys think? Is it even something worth pursuing?

Sue them for wrongful dismissal - this is against federal law.

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14-09-2012, 10:26 AM
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
Sucks dude, sorry to read it. Since I can't do anything else, I offer my condolences.

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14-09-2012, 10:30 AM
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
(14-09-2012 10:25 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  
(14-09-2012 10:13 AM)ravnwolf Wrote:  Thank you for all the suggestions. They didn't fight the unemployment, but they pretty much ruined my life. That's the part I want them to pay for so they'll understand that they can't just do what they want and not have consequences. They do have a handbook. Unfortunately, they required it back before they would give me my last check, so I can't verify their process. I do recall there being a process, I just can't remember how detailed it was in regards to disciplinary action, improvement, etc.

Trying to find a lawyer is my problem. I put in a call for one in the Atlanta area several weeks back, but he never called me back. I certainly don't want to use anyone around here. I'm pretty confident they would be biased.

I've specifically made an effort not to mention their name in any social networking arenas because this is somewhat of a small town (15k city, 35k county-wide). My gut wants to come out swinging and tear them down, but I'm pretty confident that would only serve to destroy what little dignity I have left.

Thanks again for all of your suggestions.

There have to be a number of lawyers in Atlanta. Getting the manual is easy. They can subpoena it, for any proceeding. As far as bias goes, (in a city as big as Atlanta, it shouldn't be a problem), the $$$ signs in the lawyer's eyes, will trump the social stigma business. There have to be lawyers in Atlanta that would at least talk to to you.

I don't live in Atlanta, I was given a name of a lawyer to contact there. I'm in South Central Georgia, about 2 hours from the Georgia-Florida line. I wasn't sure about using any of the lawyers around here due to bias.

But thanks for the suggestions. Smile
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14-09-2012, 10:38 AM (This post was last modified: 14-09-2012 10:45 AM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
(14-09-2012 10:30 AM)ravnwolf Wrote:  
(14-09-2012 10:25 AM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  There have to be a number of lawyers in Atlanta. Getting the manual is easy. They can subpoena it, for any proceeding. As far as bias goes, (in a city as big as Atlanta, it shouldn't be a problem), the $$$ signs in the lawyer's eyes, will trump the social stigma business. There have to be lawyers in Atlanta that would at least talk to to you.

I don't live in Atlanta, I was given a name of a lawyer to contact there. I'm in South Central Georgia, about 2 hours from the Georgia-Florida line. I wasn't sure about using any of the lawyers around here due to bias.

But thanks for the suggestions. Smile

Also the fact that they didn't fight the unemployment tells you they feel vulnerable, and don't want this exposed. If they were confident, they would have fought the unemployment. Someone, somewhere, told them not to fight your unemployment. There is a reason for that.

BTW...they didn't ruin your life. 5 years from now, you will be happily employed, working for someone else, and look back, and laugh, and give them the bird. Tongue

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14-09-2012, 11:29 AM
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
I am not sure the basal assumption that you have no legal recourse is accurate.

I am a department manager in an at-will state and I know my HR is super strict that I cannot do anything, anything at all, to jeopardize the employment of any company employee without first creating tons of paperwork. I must document 3 separate written disciplinary actions or 2 similar written disciplinary actions (for two instances of the same offense). I must also give conditions for the disciplined employee to improve his or her work performance and subsequent followup evaluations to determine whether those conditions are met. If I want to terminate someone, this is the minimum amount of paperwork I must undergo.

Why?

According to my HR, if I do less than this, then a terminated employee could file and possibly win a wrongful-termination lawsuit.

It sounds to me like your company did less than what I described, so perhaps you can file and possibly win a wrongful termination lawsuit. I'm no lawyer and this is not legal advice, but perhaps it might serve as motivation for you to get that legal advice from a lawyer eligible to practice law in Georgia.

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14-09-2012, 11:38 AM
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
Wow. That's some fucking bullshit right there.

This "at will" horseshit if fucking horrifying. What a complete and total end run around every piece of worker's rights and anti-discrimination law ever written. I'm fucking flabbergasted. Thank Christ for the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. I don't think a law like that could ever survive up here.

Hey, Ravn.

Listen to BnW. He's a lawyer. If he thinks you have a shot, then you have a shot.

Really, dude, I have no idea what to say. I mean the being fired thing is one thing, but this at will crap has me fucking speechless.

I'm no lawyer and maybe BnW can drop the science on this, but I wouldn't worry too much about lawyer bias. If they don't like you, they won't take the case. If they take the case to make you lose, they get disbarred. Speak to the lawyers. If you get a bad vibe, get the fuck out of dodge. If you find the one to take it to them, hire them. But whatever you do, FUCKING GUT THESE PRICKS!

Man alive, I got the vapours. I gotta lie down.

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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14-09-2012, 11:42 AM (This post was last modified: 14-09-2012 11:45 AM by Impulse.)
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
(14-09-2012 09:27 AM)ravnwolf Wrote:  Or actually I suppose I should say my lack thereof. I'm not sure if this is the correct category to put this, so if it needs to move, please do so moderator(s). Smile

So, here's my story --

I've worked in a particular field for almost 13 years, with the last 2.75 years being with a company that purchased the previous company I was working for. I was in upper management - the General Manager of this particular subsidiary, as a matter of fact.

Most people that I've worked with for years know my stance on religion, etc. but I've never been one to push it in their faces that they were wasting their time believing in fairy tales. A very good friend of mine, I'd say my best friend - he and I would have spirited debates about the topics. He's a believer, even though he'll tell you he's the worst kind. He knows and believes but doesn't live the way he should, etc.

As I've stated in my introduction post, I'm from South Georgia.

So, one day back in July, I walked into my office and was summoned to the main office. I didn't think anything of it because I routinely would need to go across town to the main office for this and that. So, when I get there, the VP of the company, who is very religious (I say this because he keeps an open bible on his desk at all times), was composing an email and asked me to give him a few minutes.

A few minutes went by and then he lowered the boom on me. The owner of the company had instructed him to terminate me effective immediately. Of course I was shocked! I had never had any disciplinary action with this company or even the company that owned the business before! I asked why.

He did look very sad, but he said the only thing he was instructed to say to me from the owner of the company was "you know what you did". And that was it. Dumbfounded doesn't even begin to describe how I felt.

Without rhyme or reason, I was tossed out. Even the official termination letter simply stated "terminated due to cause". Which, I understand this being the great state of Georgia, a company doesn't need a reason to terminate someone.

I've been banging my head back and forth trying to figure out what the hell happened. And then earlier this week, my good friend that still works there, let me know that there was a rumor - now mind you it's a rumor - but the rumor indicated that my connection to a website that I run (http://www.thesouthernatheist.com) might have been the reason for my dismissal. The funny thing is, I don't do that much with the site. I re-post some of Seth's videos there and other stuff, but it's mostly dormant.

I do run a podcast network of shows, none of them really related to anything religious in nature, but I don't make any bones about what I do and don't believe in my shows.

So, without any real proof, I've been bouncing the idea around of filing a charge with the EEOC for religious bias or whatever against my former employer. I don't want the job back, but I want these folks to know that you can't just arbitrarily (or at least you shouldn't be able to) get rid of someone because they don't believe the same way you do. The owners of the company are all about appearances.

What do you guys think? Is it even something worth pursuing?
Sorry this happened to you. Sad I don't know if this will be much help, but here are some articles that I found that might be worth a look:

http://voices.yahoo.com/how-sue-wrongful...93875.html
http://www.toplawfirm.com/employmentlawFAQs.html
http://www.ehow.com/how_2140337_sue-wron...ation.html
http://wrongful-termination.whocanisue.com/

Regarding the handbook or manual, do you have any friends where you used to work that might be willing and able to let you at least look at their copy?

"Religion has caused more misery to all of mankind in every stage of human history than any other single idea." --Madalyn Murray O'Hair
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14-09-2012, 11:51 AM
RE: Being fired for my beliefs
If it were me, and it's not....and I had friend acquaint me with a rumor that my termination was born from religious bullying, it would be rather wise to find the origin of such a rumor first, how it was given merit, furthermore if I was given the reason straight from the administrator of my termination in the words of "you know what you did", yes I would fight it, regardless of result. I would at least force the will against them to give a better excuse than one my mother used to say to me when I was 6.

Leviticus does not justify stupidity, but it is more than enough to define corruption of the human mind.

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