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Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:32 AM

What do I do? --I live in Pennsylvania and we are expecting 8-10 inches possible 12 " of snow.

We live in PA and are expected to get that snow storm sometime this morning. My wife works with a physically challenged client in his home and he doesn't have her starting her shift until noon. He told her yesterday (Yes, she went in on Christmas day to make their dinner for them) he expected her to be there tomorrow because if she's lived in PA all her life she should be use to this weather that Hell he drove on Interstate 80 in the blizzard of 1991 and his car was the last on the road before they closed the road.

This client lives with an older parent and the client can get around his home. There are leftovers in the fridge (my wife cooked a lot). I am really worried about her driving our chevy in this weather they are expecting. He lives in a rural area I've seen the driveway and see how she can get stuck easily.

My wife worries this client will fire her if she doesn't go in but I think this guy is being unreasonable.

suggestions?

61 replies, 3909 views

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Reply What do I do? --I live in Pennsylvania and we are expecting 8-10 inches possible 12 " of snow. (Original post)
diabeticman Dec 2012 OP
liberal N proud Dec 2012 #1
Lars39 Dec 2012 #2
FreakinDJ Dec 2012 #3
diabeticman Dec 2012 #4
FreakinDJ Dec 2012 #10
diabeticman Dec 2012 #11
FreakinDJ Dec 2012 #19
Marrah_G Dec 2012 #22
onecent Dec 2012 #30
FreakinDJ Dec 2012 #36
catbyte Dec 2012 #35
FreakinDJ Dec 2012 #37
diabeticman Dec 2012 #39
FreakinDJ Dec 2012 #43
we can do it Dec 2012 #52
catbyte Dec 2012 #61
TwilightGardener Dec 2012 #46
HappyMe Dec 2012 #17
appleannie1 Dec 2012 #38
eShirl Dec 2012 #5
diabeticman Dec 2012 #6
eShirl Dec 2012 #7
HappyMe Dec 2012 #8
HereSince1628 Dec 2012 #9
In_The_Wind Dec 2012 #12
hlthe2b Dec 2012 #13
Lars39 Dec 2012 #15
hlthe2b Dec 2012 #23
knitter4democracy Dec 2012 #14
Mira Dec 2012 #18
RKP5637 Dec 2012 #24
Uben Dec 2012 #16
GCP Dec 2012 #20
99Forever Dec 2012 #27
brooklynite Dec 2012 #33
99Forever Dec 2012 #40
Silent3 Dec 2012 #31
99Forever Dec 2012 #41
Silent3 Dec 2012 #50
99Forever Dec 2012 #56
Silent3 Dec 2012 #60
Marrah_G Dec 2012 #21
RKP5637 Dec 2012 #25
SDjack Dec 2012 #26
OnionPatch Dec 2012 #28
cherokeeprogressive Dec 2012 #29
sorefeet Dec 2012 #32
TorchTheWitch Dec 2012 #34
datasuspect Dec 2012 #42
KittyWampus Dec 2012 #47
datasuspect Dec 2012 #49
Tsiyu Dec 2012 #44
barbtries Dec 2012 #45
TwilightGardener Dec 2012 #48
we can do it Dec 2012 #55
ananda Dec 2012 #51
TeamPooka Dec 2012 #58
OneTenthofOnePercent Dec 2012 #53
Floyd_Gondolli Dec 2012 #54
ecstatic Dec 2012 #57
diabeticman Dec 2012 #59

Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:38 AM

1. I am in Cleveland today and sitting at work

I am out of vacation days for the year and regardless of the storm threat which is starting here at this moment. I had to come it this morning. we have Blizzard Warnings issued for the area.

Still, I am responsible for my time and required to be here. It is the hardships we endure living in the snow belt.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:41 AM

2. Reasons: his driveway isn't clear, roads aren't clear.

Maybe point out that she would be charging client a towing fee, and that she can easily get other clients.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:42 AM

3. In the Mountains of No. Calif. we get up 48" in a day

Plus the roads are steep

4WD and slow

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #3)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:43 AM

4. no 4 wheel drive. it is a car.

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Response to diabeticman (Reply #4)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:56 AM

10. Chains

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #10)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:59 AM

11. chains? What do I chain?

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Response to diabeticman (Reply #11)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:08 AM

19. Surely you know what chains are

They are discussed in the operator's manual of your car

you have a choice here and blaming the weather is not one of them

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #19)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:14 AM

22. Not everyone is familiar with chains

I have lived in New England all my life and the ONLY reason I knew what they were was because my mother was telling me about my brother using them up near Seattle. No one around here uses them.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #19)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:42 AM

30. I disagree with you freakin....the weather is definitely a reason to consider if

your life or your safety is at stake. People have to be responsible for themselves, and in this case
I think waiting and looking at the situation as it arises is reasonable. Hang in there and good luck on getting NO snow or very little.

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Response to onecent (Reply #30)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 10:22 AM

36. And yet you choose not to support labor unions

Labor Unions have been the only organized body discussing worker safety for the last 100 years and yet in their moment of need when ALEC and the Koch Bros have been attacking them on every front, you sit silently.

Truth of the matter is if this person does not report for work at the assigned time she will be subject for termination.

I've personally have driven in far worse snow conditions, even resorting to 4WD across forest logging roads when the highway has been closed due to excessive snow and numerous wrecks blocking the road. It can be done - it just depends on how much they want to keep their job, and in this time of where the Wealthy 1% have the 99% fighting over the scraps left at the table there will surely be some one hungrier willing to take the risk

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #19)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 10:19 AM

35. Chains are illegal in non-mountain states, have been since the 1970's.

They chew up the roads; studded tires are out too. If the State Police says to stay off the roads, listen to them. Client sounds selfish. How would he feel if she got hurt & couldn't come for a while?

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Response to catbyte (Reply #35)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 10:28 AM

37. They are legal and required in the State of Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania - One set of chains or snow tires is required when vehicles are likely to encounter any adverse weather conditions which may require chains. They must consist of not less than five cross chains and must not project more than an inch on the outside surface of the wheel.

http://www.tirechainsupply.com/tire-chain-laws.html

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #37)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 10:35 AM

39. This is news to me. Maybe in the mountains but never seen chains sold in the stores in Western PA.

New have something called all purpose tires.

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Response to diabeticman (Reply #39)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 11:07 AM

43. Actually required by law

lets face it - to some of us 12" of snow ain't shit, and should your wife's employer take objection to her not showing up and terminates her employment you don't have legal grounds to stand on

but I'm sure you already knew that

So do what you can afford

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Response to diabeticman (Reply #39)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 04:22 PM

52. How long have you lived there? We've neen getting snow that deep quite often.

We are north of Akron, Oh and we get over 10 inches quite often, especially the past few years.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #37)

Thu Dec 27, 2012, 12:18 AM

61. Pennsylvania has mountains. Sheesh.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #19)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 11:50 AM

46. I have lived in snowy areas all my life and never once

put chains on my tires.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #10)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:05 AM

17. There are some places

that you can't use chains, or even buy them.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #10)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 10:35 AM

38. I live in PA. Chains are legal but I have not seen them in over 40 years.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:43 AM

5. depends. is he screwed if she doesn't show up?

or just inconvenienced a bit?

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Response to eShirl (Reply #5)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:44 AM

6. inconvenienced more than anything

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Response to diabeticman (Reply #6)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:47 AM

7. in that situation I'd use my own judgement depending on road conditions at the time

and I wouldn't feel too bad about either cancelling or arriving late (or leaving early)

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:47 AM

8. It sounds like he's being unreasonable.

I think she should stay home. It's not worth the risk.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:48 AM

9. If he's at risk without her, I'd contact police non-emergency at this time

and see if there is a police or fire auxillary, working the storm with appropriate vehicles.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:00 AM

12. Your wife needs to stay home.

She prepared her client for today when she was there yesterday.
He is being unreasonable.



There are agencies who will hire your wife as a caregiver.
In New York, one of the best is Unlimited Care. http://www.unlimitedcareinc.com/about.aspx
Look for an agency like UC near you.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:00 AM

13. She could "call his bluff" and say she would stay for the next couple of days around the clock

just to be sure, but of course he would have to pay full wages throughout that time.

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Response to hlthe2b (Reply #13)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:03 AM

15. Double time. :-)

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Response to Lars39 (Reply #15)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:16 AM

23. heh heh... absolutely

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:02 AM

14. I'd make it clear what extra costs he'd be taking on.

He'd pay for any damage to her car, any towing fees, and for you to go with her as a safety escort.

Hit him in the pocketbook, and he's more likely to back off.

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Response to knitter4democracy (Reply #14)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:07 AM

18. I like that idea - anything where his inconvenience

equals or exceeds hers/yours.
He is unkind and unreasonable.

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Response to knitter4democracy (Reply #14)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:19 AM

24. This sounds good to me too. The guy sounds like an asshole. n/t

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:05 AM

16. Since its snowing, howzabout a little white lie?

"She backed out of the driveway and got stuck on the curb." Look, the guy will survive one day without your wife. If something WERE to happen, he'd feel bad (well, hopefully), you'd feel bad, and she'd feel bad. The best way to avoid accidents is to not put yourself in peril! Stay home!

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:09 AM

20. If the choice is between the possibility of getting fired

And the possibility of a bad accident and even death, it's a no-brainer.

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Response to GCP (Reply #20)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:29 AM

27. ^^This^^

You might also ask the jerk if he's familiar with the phrase:

"Wrongful termination suit."

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #27)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:52 AM

33. On what basis would the termination be "wrongful"?

First, I suspect that this is not a "boss/Employee" arrangement, but rather a "client/service provider" arrangement, in which case there is no guarantee of continued employment outside of an agreed-upon contract. Second, how would legally "proove" you couldn't get to work, and how would that compare (again, legally) to the client's proveable claim that you didn't show up?

Not arguing the ethics or morality, only the law.

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #33)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 11:00 AM

40. I suspect that ...

.. all of the points you raised would decided by a jury, not us on the internet. Road conditions, with public statements from safety officials, are indeed a legitimate, LEGAL and "provable claim" that a person would be risking their very health and life by being FORCED to travel on them without ABSOLUTE necessity.

Also, even "winning" a lawsuit, isn't free. Got any other "right to work for less" talking points you need shot down?

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Response to GCP (Reply #20)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:44 AM

31. The *possibility* of accident or death exists all of the time

This is not a "no-brainer" because a storm, even a big one, doesn't suddenly turn completely safe into completely dangerous. If you never accepted any possibility of accident or death driving to and from a job, you'd have to stay huddled in your house and never go out.

I don't know the exact figures, but we all accept worse than 1-in-milliion odds of dying in a car accident if we drive to various jobs over the course of a couple of decades or more. If that's not unacceptable risk, what is unacceptable? 1 in 100,000? 1 in 10,000? 1 in 1000?

On a per day basis, how much risk is acceptable? Even in a bad storm the risk of a minor fender bender is probably less than 1 in 100 for one round trip of 50 miles or less. The risk of serious injury or death is probably less than 1 in 10,000 or 1 in 100,000.

I still think the OP's client is being an asshole, by the way, but the OP has to make a realistic risk/benefit assessment. Speaking as if this thing called a "possibility" of accident or death is a binary proposition that turns on and off like a light when a storm comes along, and as if no "possibility" is acceptable, isn't realistic.

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Response to Silent3 (Reply #31)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 11:05 AM

41. Perhaps you prefer...

... a wrongful death suit, then?

You think State Patrols and roads departments issue warnings against non-essential travel just for kicks?

It might surprise you to learn that employers have responsibility and liability for their actions also.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #41)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 04:15 PM

50. My mother was an often on-call operating room nurse

Many times she drove through bad winter storms to be at the hospital for surgery.

The importance of her work made the risk/benefit trade off more worthwhile, of course. That didn't make the risk to my mother smaller, however. Then again, the risk was always small, even if higher than when the weather was good. We worried about her some, of course, but we were hardly living in white-knuckle terror each time that she got called in during bad weather that she was about to die.

From the standpoint of the OP's employer, it sounds like it costs him no more than a little inconvenience to let the OP have the day off if the weather is bad. Even if the actual risk is small, so is the cost to the employer. That's why I agreed that the employer is being an asshole.

From the OP's perspective, however, if the employer is going to be a jerk, that's something he/she has to deal with. For the OP, the equation becomes a matter of balancing a small risk (bigger than normal by a good factor, but still small) against a big cost. Loss of a job can be anywhere from extremely inconvenient to devastating for some people.

None of what I'm saying argues one bit against "employers have responsibility and liability", nor does that come as any surprise to me.

As for "You think State Patrols and roads departments issue warnings against non-essential travel just for kicks?": Do I really need to answer that silly rhetorical question as if anything I have said implies that in the slightest?

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Response to Silent3 (Reply #50)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 05:15 PM

56. You asked..

.. I answered. So yes, you should answer that "silly rhetorical question," since having the sense to not put one's life at risk following the advice of PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICIALS is neither rhetorical or silly. But you seem to think you are smarter than those who entire careers are spent dealing with these matters.

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #56)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 08:35 PM

60. You put your life at risk all of the time.

Last edited Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:23 PM - Edit history (1)

So does everyone. It's called being alive.

I have not at all questioned the expertise of PUBLIC SAFETY OFFICIALS.

What I have questioned your inflexible interpretation of how one should or should not react to various warnings and advisories under different circumstances, and your assessment that it's a "no-brainer" in a case like the OP, especially where higher-than-normal-but-still-low risks are weighted against the individual, personal value other people might place on costs like losing employment.

A winter travel advisory does not mean "OMG!!11!!1! DONT GOES OUT THAR R U R GONNA DIEEEEE!11!!!!". A winter travel advisory is hardly on the same level as, say, a hurricane evacuation order for a community in a storm surge zone. All it means, under a fairly very conservative risk/cost assessment, is that most typical activities aren't worth the risk posed by the weather, especially as most of what people do driving here and there can be put off until bad weather has passed.

The average person doesn't have their job on the line if they stay home during bad weather, especially when a winter travel advisory has been issued and that makes more reasonable employers more accommodating.

The existence of an advisory also lowers the risk for those who get out and drive anyway, since there will be far fewer other vehicles to worry about, and it's easier to go at a slow and cautious speed.

I'm personally very cautious about traveling in bad weather, and low risk or not from bad weather, I'd likely have a "take this job and shove it" reaction to an inconsiderate employer like the OP's employer -- but I know that's just me, and I'm not going to say it's a "no brainer" if the OP doesn't do as I would do. I know it's more complicated than that.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:11 AM

21. Honestly.... it depends on how vital the job is to your family

and how easily she can find another.

It shouldn't be this way, but this has to figure into the decision.

This employer sounds pretty unreasonable. If she isn't getting paid a VERY good wage, if I were her I would start looking for another client.

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Response to Marrah_G (Reply #21)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:19 AM

25. +1, n/t

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:27 AM

26. Send him food via UPS

Quick -- get 2 loaves of white bread, 2 dozen eggs, 1 quart of milk, 1 pound of butter, and 2 quarts of maple flavored syrup. Box all with a recipe for French toast. Send to client via UPS. If the package is delivered, good. If not, then there was no way your wife could have broken through the snow to get to him.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:32 AM

28. Have her stay home.

I grew up next door to Pennsylvania, in Ohio and now have been living in the mountains of California for many years and driving in the snow doesn't seem like such a big thing to me but for someone who is not used to it, it's dangerous. She can get her snow-driving experience in a lighter snowfall and a shorter drive and someday she will be ok to make this sort of drive. But right now, I wouldn't.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:35 AM

29. Call him. n/t

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:46 AM

32. Fuck the inconsiderable prick

Weather warnings usually say stay home if at all possible. The client sounds safe and snug in his warm home and for him to put you in danger is out of the question. He sounds selfish and unconcerned about you. Drop him and find another, you must protect yourself.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 09:53 AM

34. your wife is seriously thinking of doing this???

NO WAY. No client is worth her life or health. Yes, we in PA are used to weather like this and do the SENSIBLE thing and not risk our lives and health driving in the middle of a damn blizzard. Plow companies and first responders are always begging people to stay off the roads so they can do their jobs instead of wasting time rescuing the dumbasses that think they can get through it. And to top it off this guy lives in a rural area? There's no way that roads and his long driveway are going to be cleared until the storm is over.

Tell this asshole that wife will be happy to come in to work under such unreasonable conditions just the moment he buys her a shiny new snow plow.


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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 11:06 AM

42. slow down, don't jerk the wheel

 

and use the engine more than the brakes to slow down.

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Response to datasuspect (Reply #42)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 12:00 PM

47. I have found the problem driving in snow/ice is other drivers around me >

if you know what I mean.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #47)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 12:07 PM

49. 10 roger on that one

 

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 11:34 AM

44. How did you make decisions before you joined DU?



Some of the replies are Classic Supply Side:

"The Job Creators are a Jealous Gawd, and will reject you on a whim. You working people take no real risks! You sit next to your sack of Labor, able to reach in and pull out an endless supply of physical health, adequate energy and unwavering motivation if you WANT TO.

If you don't want to spend some of this endless supply of free Labor you possess, no matter how good the reason you give to avoid the work, you are LAZY and DON'T REALLY WANT A JOB.

Here's reality.

Your wife's work is a business. What is she risking to make the day's meager wage?

The vehicle. Is is fully insured? If she wrecks it, can you replace it? If not, what percentage of the car's replacement cost is covered by the day's wages? Is it worth the day's wages to risk the Chevy? Is it worth the job itself to risk the Chevy? How long will this person be employing your wife? If the client is this demanding and unrealistic, is it possible he might fire her anyway for some other frivolous reason?

The health care costs of being injured. What part of an ambulance ride, hospital ER visit and medications - plus lost work time - will the day's wages cover? Will the job itself cover if she doesn't lose it after being injured?

And let's not mention the socialist police and EMTs who must respond and possibly put their own lives at risk to rescue your wife should she reel off into a ditch. Teabaggers sure hate taxes, but when they demand you "show up or else" they are costing us public funds. The businesses want these free services to be covered by the working folks, too.

What should you do?

The Math.










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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 11:42 AM

45. if the road is impassable

she should not go in. you can get weather advisories to validate your decision. good luck.
just because he was a reckless asshole doesn't mean your wife should risk her neck for him.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 12:01 PM

48. If she's in any kind of home health/nursing role, she needs to figure out

how to get around in the snow, or be prepared to spend the night at a client's house. This is just the way it is in that field--employers tend to be very unsympathetic about your inability to get to work. When I was a nurse in Florida, I was expected to come in during hurricanes--it was "all hands on deck", you couldn't evacuate like other people. I drove through blizzards in the plains states, prepared to stay at the hospital for a day or two in case they shut the interstate down and the next shift got stuck (though you were expected to pay attention to the forecast and leave for work BEFORE a storm if it was going to be bad, just to make sure you could be there). It's just not a career field where you can call off--you are considered essential. One of the many reasons I left the health care field.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #48)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 04:26 PM

55. I have to agree with you.

Not meant to be mean, but she did choose the job and it does snow a lot in this part of the country.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 04:21 PM

51. Well..

What is more important to you and your wife: her life or his shitty demand?

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Response to ananda (Reply #51)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 05:43 PM

58. ditto nt

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 04:22 PM

53. Have her purposefully get her car stuck in the snow about 1-2 blocks from your house.

 

Then she can call in and say she slid off the road and got stuck. (text him pics too).
Have a friend with a 4wd truck onhand to pulll her car out right after and then enjoy your day off.

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 04:23 PM

54. He sounds like an asshole

 

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 05:18 PM

57. Cancel. He'll get over it

He won't want to go through the process of training someone new or going for a long time without care. Does she have insurance? In the event of an accident, who would take care of the medical bills?

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Response to diabeticman (Original post)

Wed Dec 26, 2012, 06:39 PM

59. Thanks for your thoughts and opinions. My wife did go in.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022075362


She has this sense of duty working for the guy 6 days a week but he makes sure she average 25 to 28 hours.

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