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Can they fire me for being a victim of domestic violence?!?

Posted by on Apr. 21, 2014 at 10:27 AM
  • 24 Replies

I need some advice please.  I've been separated for 9 months from my crazy, delusional, abusive STBX.  He's always been very jealous and controlling, but things got really bad two years ago when he accused me of having an affair with a coworker.  I've been completely faithful and tried to prove it by passing a lie detector test. Of course, he didn't accept the results.  He GPSed my car, put spyware on the computer, send my panties & sheets to a lab for sperm testing, stalked me, and was abusive in many ways.

Shortly after he accused me, he started calling my coworker and harassing the man as well as stalking him.  I had a protection order against my husband and had to bring this my employer's attention.  My coworker (who by the way has always been professional and courteous to me) was freaked out that this total stranger was harassing him.  It's clear to everyone that my STBX is having a difficult time distinguishing between reality and his twisted fantasies.  Shortly after this started my employer issued a Do Not Trespass notice to him so that he cannot go on the property.  They increased security too.

Meanwhile, my STBX has continued to make threats against me, the coworker, the human resources officer, VP and President of the company who he thinks are all involved in this vast conspiracy to cover for me.  Because it's obvious to everyone that I work with that I'm not having an affair and the ex is delusional and abusive, the management is all really worried that my STBX is going to come to the office and commit some act of violence.

I've just been informed that they are forcing me to work from home until further notice.  I'm worried that if I'm out of sight, I'm out of mind and I'll be passed by for promotions, etc.  I've always been an explary employee, but now I'm extremely worried that they are going to fire me.  Everyone is really tired of having to deal with the extra security at the office.  They are tired of the continuous drama that my ex continues to create.  I'm sure there is resentment too that my other team members have to pick up the slack due my abscence.

Sorry this post is so long, but I need advice and I don't know what to do.  Should I start looking for another job?  If I lose this job I'll have no way to support myself and my kids.  Do I have any rights here?  I am fearful of my safety too and would like to get another protection order but I feel that will be the final straw for me at work and they'll fire me.

by on Apr. 21, 2014 at 10:27 AM
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Replies (1-10):
mygirls53
by Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 10:38 AM
1 mom liked this
They can do what they want especially if it concerns the safety of all other employees
virginiamama71
by Carrie on Apr. 21, 2014 at 10:41 AM

 You can talk to a lawyer but they have to protect their employees

krisnkids
by Gold Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 10:43 AM
1 mom liked this

I would start by consulting a lawyer and seeing what your rights are.

I do have to side with the employer tho, them "forcing" you to work from home is a good thing for your and serves as a protection for the company and its employees. If they were to have to let you go then you would probably have grounds to sue your ex for loss of job etc.

I wouldn't be worrying too much about promotions etc just yet. Worry about your divorce, keeping your job and your health.

wendythewriter
by Bronze Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 11:53 AM
1 mom liked this

They can't fire you for being a domestic violence victim, per se. Not like, "Oh, your husband hits you? Well, you're fired, then."

However, if your situation brings danger to their business and their other employees and possibly customers, they have to put the well being of everyone over the needs of one. They can't allow everyone to knowingly be in danger because  you don't deserve to be fired.

At this point, however, all they've done is changed you to a work at home position until this is resolved. You're leaping to the idea that you might be fired. I wouldn't leap to that. I would simply do as they want and work from home. It's safer for you, as well as them. 

As far as getting a protection order, I don't see how they could use that to fire you. In fact, that would be another layer of protection for everyone, as it would give them better standing to have him arrested if he were to show up. 

kylensmom1229
by Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 12:11 PM
2 moms liked this

I believe it partially depends what state you live in- some states are right to work states, like AZ for example where they can fire you for anything. In NY, they cannot fire you for something like that, HOWEVER if you have become a liability to the company or are putting the other employees in an unsafe situation (not you personally, but by default) they might find a way to justify your dismissal. You definitely might want to have a sit-down with the human resources department and discuss options, as well as the local police department because the order of protection may need to be revised. Law enforcement needs to be aware of the level of serious danger this has escalated to. The more people you notify and get involved, the more you will be protected- physically and legally.

I hate to say, but some of this story sounds questionable. Not just anyone can bag up panties and send them to a random "lab" for testing unless they worked in law enforcement or a similar career- in which case they'd lose their job for using laboratory resources for personal reasons. Also, lie detector tests are not excessible to the public either.  So either this man is James Bond or something is fishy. In addition, if you already have an order of protection against this man, and he is continuing to harass you, your co-workers, VP of the company, etc- then why isn't he in jail for criminal contempt? If he is breaking the order of protection, there should have been no need for your employer to go to such great lengths because the man should have been arrested.

amonkeymom
by Gold Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 2:41 PM
1 mom liked this

I agree with what the others have said.  They can't fire you just because you're a victim, but many employers wouldn't hesitate to fire someone who posed a danger to others in their business.  By association, you pose a threat, so it's possible.

magnolia22973
by New Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 5:44 PM


Quoting kylensmom1229:

I hate to say, but some of this story sounds questionable. Not just anyone can bag up panties and send them to a random "lab" for testing unless they worked in law enforcement or a similar career- in which case they'd lose their job for using laboratory resources for personal reasons. Also, lie detector tests are not excessible to the public either.  So either this man is James Bond or something is fishy. In addition, if you already have an order of protection against this man, and he is continuing to harass you, your co-workers, VP of the company, etc- then why isn't he in jail for criminal contempt? If he is breaking the order of protection, there should have been no need for your employer to go to such great lengths because the man should have been arrested.


magnolia22973
by New Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 5:54 PM

As to the sperm tests, there is a website ssdi.pro where one can mail them a garment or something with suspected ejaculate on it and they send back the results.  My husband had a vasectomy and was so convinced that the results would come back with the presence of sperm.  I have copies of the results of three times he sent my underwear and one time where he sent our sheets.  This company also did a DNA test, but he won't show me the results.  I'm curious of course, but have nothing to worry about.

As to the lie detector test, I voluntarily took that back when I gave a hoot about trying to save our marriage.  I passed it with flying colors.  I got a copy of the results emailed to me, but my paranoid husband just dismissed them.

Unfortunately, the order of protection expired and I never went back to renew it.  Stupid me.

As to work, I feel like I've been exiled to Siberia.  I feel like I'm being punished for something out of my control.  I wish I just kept it quiet.

Mygirl30248
by Bronze Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 6:04 PM

You may have a lawsuit on your hands no against the company but your STBX. He has caused you issues with work possibly you will have to leave work he should be held to compensate you somehow. I think the company likely has the right to terminate you based on the safety issues at hand maybe they even have something written somewhere about employee safety too. 

I'd begin to look. I'd call unemployment as well see what their policy is about such a scenario in your state as well. Is your state at will? If so then you can be fired without any cause at any time. 

brieri
by Platinum Member on Apr. 21, 2014 at 7:36 PM

Thanks everyone.  Feel like been in a similar situation.

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