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So my job got threatened today.

Bendery It Like BeckhamBendery It Like Beckham HopelessRegistered User regular
edited January 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
I'm currently employed as an assistant manager for a large pizza chain down here in sunny San Diego, CA. I've been with this company for well over a year and just got my first raise and entered management which is cool I guess. But I have an issue, I suffer from severe debilitating repeated migraines almost every day of the week for some undetermined span. This had really never been a problem before, as I would end up getting a migraine for a few hours after waking up in the afternoon, about 1:00pm to 3:00pm and then I'd be fine to go to work from 5:00pm to 1:00am no problems. Then recently the schedule changed to being almost random and lasting 6-8 hours.

I wish I could say that I should just suck it up when I get these headache, hell I wish I could, but when the doctor asks you worst pain 1-10 I don't even think twice about it being a 10 (In comparison shattering my arm was a 6 on that scale).

So I was 10 minutes late on tuesday. I ended up getting a migraine around 3:00pm with work at 5:00pm so I called the person who was going to be closing that night right away and said I may be a little late. I thought 2 hours notice was plenty fair, apparently not. When I got in to work today, after a work meeting in which I sat through with double vision and light sensitivity, my manager tells me that being late due to a migrain, even with 3-4-5 hours notice he doesn't give a fuck, is no longer acceptable and that it is not covered under the Americans with Disability acts, and that if I don't suck it up and do my job I will not have one to show up late to.

I'm honestly not sure what to do, I tried to tell him I've been in and out of neurology and that I have started a new med that is supposed to help but it will take a couple weeks, but he just told me to "can it".

If I get fired should i appeal to ADA? Should i go over his head and talk to his supervisor? This manager is someone I used to be good friends with, and really enjoyed working with. But ever since I stopped being able to come in on my days off, work over time, cover his shifts, and do just about anything at any time he's become a real dick.

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Posts

  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    contact the equal employment people

    this definitely sounds like your boss is being unfair

    it's documented and you're actively trying to get it fixed. I believe it's covered under ADA guidelines because it prevents your daily function

    but talk to the Equal Opportunity Employment people

    edit: did this guy know of your condition before? Is he being difficult because it's starting to affect your work or does he think you're faking it to excuse laziness?

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  • Bendery It Like BeckhamBendery It Like Beckham Hopeless Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    I honestly don't know, I've been working with him for about a year and until my headaches started becoming severe to the point where i couldn't work and they were an every day thing I was always at work early, working, staying late when asked, pretty much a model employee.

    My previous boss knew about them, because one night I came out of the restroom with my eye watering like a facet and I explained it to him, he let me go home early that night and it never happened again. I'm going to talk to the area supervisor tomorrow, and see what else i can do to keep my job. Apparently because California is an at-will state they don't really need a reason to fire you.

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  • RaneadosRaneados Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    they can't fire you for something that goes against the ADA though right?

    it sounds like you're being perfectly reasonable and trying to at least work with your schedule, even taking medication

    you're trying, he's not. I'd talk to the ADA whatevers and go over his head

    Dubh wrote: »
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  • Bendery It Like BeckhamBendery It Like Beckham Hopeless Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    I'll call the ADA in the morning. Thanks Rane

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  • The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    ADA is of a surprisingly wide range. If I remember correctly, anything that prevents you from functioning "normally" is covered under ADA. Of course, IANAL nor do I have any specific knowledge about ADA.

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  • PrimePrime Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    keep in mind I know nothing about CA laws but if they can fire you at will anyway wouldnt throwing the ADA book at them just make them get rid of you quicker for some other reason they will make up?

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  • GothicLargoGothicLargo Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Prime wrote: »
    keep in mind I know nothing about CA laws but if they can fire you at will anyway wouldnt throwing the ADA book at them just make them get rid of you quicker for some other reason they will make up?

    Your employer can fire you for being a an unreliable employee, and his lawyer can object to your bringing the ADA into the picture if they argue their case solely from the "this is his attendance record, this is the company policy" perspective.

    The ADA prevents companies from firing people solely for the fact that they are disabled. It does not provide employees an out to be bad employees. It's not unreasonable to expect every person, disabled or not, to show up at work on time.

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  • MichaelLCMichaelLC In what furnace was thy brain? ChicagoRegistered User regular
    edited January 2010
    The ADA prevents companies from firing people solely for the fact that they are disabled. It does not provide employees an out to be bad employees. It's not unreasonable to expect every person, disabled or not, to show up at work on time.

    Pretty much this.

    However, something like returning to your evening schedule might be an reasonable accommodation. So, talk to ADA. Pretty stupid of the manager to say something like that; they admitted they were aware it's a medical issue now which is always bad for the company.

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  • The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    MichaelLC wrote: »
    The ADA prevents companies from firing people solely for the fact that they are disabled. It does not provide employees an out to be bad employees. It's not unreasonable to expect every person, disabled or not, to show up at work on time.

    Pretty much this.

    However, something like returning to your evening schedule might be an reasonable accommodation. So, talk to ADA. Pretty stupid of the manager to say something like that; they admitted they were aware it's a medical issue now which is always bad for the company.

    On the assumption that a doctor has been seen concerning the migraines, and that the employer was notified that the migraines were occurring and that notice was given to management that the employee was going to be late, there may be an ADA case there.

    The bottom line is that any action against the company will result in you being fired. Keep this on the hush hush and see if ADA can tell you if you have a case or not. In the meantime, even if you're head is killing you, you need to be at work on time. Once there, you can tell your supervisor that you can't work due to the migraines, taking approved personal or sick days as necessary.

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  • MrOlettaMrOletta Registered User
    edited January 2010
    Can't help much regarding your situation, but I can sympathize with your migraine pain.

    I get them as well, though not as frequent (once a year). I completely agree that the pain ranks easily a 10. Remember that scene from Pi where he imagines using a drill on his temple? Yeah that's how terrible it can be.

    I will say what maybe you can keep a log of things throughout your day that occur or you eat so you can ultimately track it down to either an environmental change or a diet change that's your trigger. My trigger happens to be bright reflected light (sun's reflection off of a car windshield, for example) and I ultimately found wearing polarized (to diminish glare) sunglasses have solved my problem.

  • BelruelBelruel naw Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    others addressed the actual thing you asked so i'll reiterate what mroletta said

    yeah it can be caused by a trigger, such as a type of juice you drink everyday, or caffiene, or just soda/the dye in foods.

    try changing what you eat for a few days completely and see if there is a difference. my mom had the same type of thing, and we figured out it was our water, and eggs. she ate both every day, and having each on its own made her uncomfortable, but together she couldn't even function. so now we buy big ole jugs of filtered water, and she avoids eggs, and problem all fixed.

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  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    MichaelLC wrote: »
    The ADA prevents companies from firing people solely for the fact that they are disabled. It does not provide employees an out to be bad employees. It's not unreasonable to expect every person, disabled or not, to show up at work on time.

    Pretty much this.

    However, something like returning to your evening schedule might be an reasonable accommodation. So, talk to ADA. Pretty stupid of the manager to say something like that; they admitted they were aware it's a medical issue now which is always bad for the company.

    It's not like he just showed up an hour late or something. We're talking 10 minutes, that's absolutely nothing and I'd be surprised if the judge didn't laugh at that for an excuse to fire someone. Especially since he let someone know and they could cover for him for 10 minutes.

    I'd be looking for another job if at all possible. To me it just sounds like he's a silly goose because you're management now. Generally managers want lower managers to kiss their ass and suck up to them and worship the ground they walk on. Playground mentality ultimately.

    You said it's a pizza place, is it a national chain or local chain? I'd go higher and let the next person up know that you have migraine issues that this is a medical issue you're readily taken care of, and if you're going to be 5-10 minutes late again you'll be sure to still let them know so you're covered during that period.

  • DeebaserDeebaser Alpha Teemo wawing a note with the cinema code Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    If changing the schedule will help you, then you may have a claim under the ADA. However, depending on what the job entails, they don't have to accept random tardiness.

    Summary:
    -Call the EEOC and ask for official advice.
    - Migranes CAN fall under the ADA
    - Tardiness generally doesn't

  • DeebaserDeebaser Alpha Teemo wawing a note with the cinema code Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    bowen wrote: »

    It's not like he just showed up an hour late or something. We're talking 10 minutes, that's absolutely nothing and I'd be surprised if the judge didn't laugh at that for an excuse to fire someone. Especially since he let someone know and they could cover for him for 10 minutes.

    It doesn't matter really. If the job requires you to show up at 5PM, You sporatically show up at 5:10PM, but they really need you by 5:00PM, they are not necessarily required to accommodate you.

  • bowenbowen Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Deebaser wrote: »
    bowen wrote: »

    It's not like he just showed up an hour late or something. We're talking 10 minutes, that's absolutely nothing and I'd be surprised if the judge didn't laugh at that for an excuse to fire someone. Especially since he let someone know and they could cover for him for 10 minutes.

    It doesn't matter really. If the job requires you to show up at 5PM, You sporatically show up at 5:10PM, but they really need you by 5:00PM, they are not necessarily required to accommodate you.

    But that's not the case. He told them he was running late and gave them an advanced notice. I'd be hard pressed to believe any would say that's unreasonable or a justified reason to fire someone (depends on state too though). Although he could be a silly goose about it and just not call and claim there was a traffic accident that kept him and he left early enough to account for normal traffic flow. Clearly that's the better of the two options.

    However, something the ADA will defend is probably even better -- I've been in the same boat OP has, growing up as a kid I'd get sinus migraines so bad I wouldn't be able to see straight. All from my allergies which is definitely a medical issue and most likely something they'd defend me being 10 minutes late to work for.

  • DmanDman Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    My main concern is your migraines.

    If you get them all the time that is not cool. You should make some changes to your lifestyle and see if you can cut down on how often you get them.

    The Migraine Brain is an excellent resource for migraine sufferers, I highly recommend you read it. It will help you understand your headaches, the triggers, the medication options and has some suggestions to help you reduce the frequency and severity of your headaches through lifestyle changes.

  • DeebaserDeebaser Alpha Teemo wawing a note with the cinema code Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Bowen, I agree that it's a total goose move to give the OP crap over it, but if they need him at 5, 5:10 may not be good enough and they may not be required to just suck it up.

  • chromdomchromdom That Guy Go Cows!Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Also important to note that California is an "at will" state. An employer can hire or fire at will, and an employee can leave at will. No reason or notice is required.
    So yeah, they can fire you, not give you a reason why (even though you know what the reason is), and you'll just be shit outta luck.
    I've seen migraines, and have an idea of how debilitating they can be, but you may be barking up the wrong tree trying to get your manager to understand that.

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  • TalondelTalondel Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    There is a lot of *bad* advice in this thread.

    First of all, there is no agency out there called ADA. The ADA, or Americans with Disabilities Act, is a law, not an agency. The law is enforced by an egency called the EEOC. Typically you will have to file a claim with the EEOC before you can take your claim to court.

    Second, it is likely that your employer can fire you at any time, for no reason. In most states, your employer does not have to have a reason for firing you. What they can't do is fire you for a *bad* reason, and a disability covered by the ADA is one of those things.

    Third, there is a "no retaliation" clause in the ADA. That means that another reason you *can't* be fired is for requesting a reasonable accomidation under the ADA.

    To sum up:
    Fire you for no reason? OK
    Fire you for being 10 minutes late? OK
    Fire you for being 10 minutes late because you had a migraine and they knew that was the reason you were late? Probably not OK
    Fire you for asking for some flexibility in your schedule to accomidate your migraines? Probably not OK

    For some good advice about migraines and the ADA, look here: http://www.healthcentral.com/migraine/c/11175/68921/disabilities-act/3

    For information on how to contact the EEOC and how to file an ADA claim, look here: http://www.dol.gov/odep/pubs/fact/rights.htm

    /I am not a lawyer, and I'm certainly not your lawyer. If you need legal advice, consult and attorney who is licensed to practice law in your state.

  • 4U2NV4U2NV Registered User
    edited January 2010
    I'll go in a different direction for this thread....

    I used to get migraines a lot when I as in middle school and early high school. Now I just get bad headaches about 1x a week. My girlfriend gets bad headaches also.

    We both take a medication called Maxalt. Works like a charm, everytime I feel like I am getting a headache, I take it, and within 50 minutes its completely gone. You should definitely ask your doctor about it.

  • Jason00Jason00 Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    4U2NV wrote: »
    I'll go in a different direction for this thread....

    I used to get migraines a lot when I as in middle school and early high school. Now I just get bad headaches about 1x a week. My girlfriend gets bad headaches also.

    We both take a medication called Maxalt. Works like a charm, everytime I feel like I am getting a headache, I take it, and within 50 minutes its completely gone. You should definitely ask your doctor about it.

    I have taken Maxalt as well for really bad headaches and migraines, and it worked like a charm. A warning though -- my doctor told me that people normally have a bad reaction to it the first time they take it, and she was 100% right. For the first 20 minutes I was dizzy and disoriented, but it never happened after that first time.

  • JasconiusJasconius sword criminal Flo-ridaRegistered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Never, ever, ever believe what any manager or employer tells you about employee rights.

    Consult the source.

  • OhioOhio Registered User
    edited January 2010
    This isn't exactly a "How do I get rid of migraines" thread so I'll be brief with what works for me.

    I used to get migraines a lot, and they did ruin a lot of situations just like the one the OP describes. It's very frustrating. My bachelor party was ruined because I had a migraine. That was 8 years ago and it still bothers me. People who don't get them can't understand how a headache could be so debilitating. They're impossible to describe and they're not "just a headache."

    Anyway, what works for me is exercise. I run now, a lot, and I get a migraine maybe once a month (compared to twice a week years ago.

  • SheepSheep Registered User, __BANNED USERS
    edited January 2010
    I suffer migraines myself. You were bullshitted with the "ADA doesn't cover migraines". the ADA doesn't have a list of shit that's okay and not okay.

    The EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) is a Government program that recognizes migraines as a disability and an impairment. The ADA takes cues from the EEOC.

    If they hired you with the knowledge that you have this issue, and you have a paper trail of you visiting the doctor and making an effort, then I would immediately attempt to negotiate changes to your schedule. As mentioned above, the ADA can't help you if you're fired for tardiness, but if they refuse to work with you and your schedule, knowing that you have this issue, and then you get fired, the ADA and EEOC can probably help then.

    If the manager refuses to work with you, then go to the supervisor. Be calm, cool, don't make threats, etc.

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  • nevilleneville The Worst Gay (Seriously. The Worst!)Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Jasconius wrote: »
    Never, ever, ever believe what any manager or employer tells you about employee rights.

    Consult the source.

    100% this

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  • TrillianTrillian Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Yeah darlin' you have a well documented autoimmune disease and those are not to be trifled with at the best of times. I get beastly headaches thanks to my own, but that is not the purpose of this thread. If your manager is being a silly fucking goose about you being late because you do, effectively, have a disability in that you are literally sick of yourself, then fuck 'em. If you like your job then, I don't know, try to be less allergic? If you don't like it then pin them to the wall with every ADA act you can find, then find yourself a better job where you may even be able to eat the food.


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