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Fri Apr 13, 2012, 06:20 PM

Interesting Decision to be made ...

Some of you may know I work in Human Resources for my state's Judiciary. I do employee relations kind of stuff, like advising both management and employees with respect to policy, procedures and disciplinary matters.

In the course of my day, I go out of my way to spend a lot of time talking with employees ... I call it "temperature checks" ... and that has helped me head off any number of employee relations issues, before they become employee relations problems. As a result, I frequently get into non-work related discussions ... a sometimes those discussions time to politics. I have an unspoken rule that when the conversation turns to politics, I listen; but say very little.

Well, my relationship with one employee had been fine until a couple of years ago ... January of 2008 to be exact. He is a "constitutional free-market libertarian", AKA teaparty advocate. Since that time, he has taken every opportunity to bash President Obama, his policies, and Democrats, in general, for their promotion of a "nanny-state" and their constant coddling of "lazy takers" at the expense of "producers."

I recall him absolutely blowing a gasket when President Obama fought for the extension of unemployment benefits on the federal level and, he danced with glee when the AZ legislature sought to cut the length of unemployment benefits and to drug test U/C applicants as a condition of accessing the benefit ... "After all, U/C is paying people not to work. Cut them off and they'll gladly take that job at McDonalds!" and "if their gonna get tax-payer dollars, we have every right to ensure that they are not wasting it on drugs!"

Well, after listening to this for the better part of 3 years, this employee's name came across my desk. It has been established that he has/had been engaged in an inappropriate relationship with the mother of one of his charges; a clear violation of both court polciy and the judicial canons ... and he lied about it, twice!

He came to me to plead his case and, as with every employee, I told him that if he was in the right, I would fight for him; if he was in the wrong, I would cry mercy ... if he let me. In other words, if he did it he had to cop to it and I would attempt to mitigate the damages.

Well he did exactly that and I cried mercy and recommended a suspension. His Department Director is now recommending termination. So true to my reputation, I have interceded on his behalf a second time, citing to a minor flaw in our processs that while defendable, could make termination (without doing more work) kind of messy ... I, then, pointed to his 14 year spotless record and again cried mercy.

I just got off the phone with the Director who wants us to do the work and then terminated him. As a practice, in instances of terminations for non-criminal conduct, I routinely offer to allow the employee to resign rather than be terminated, in exchange for not challenging any U/C claim.

Now here's the question ... Do I help this employee be true to his socio-political philosophy by not offering to not challenge his U/C claim; or should I place him in the uncomfortable position of having to violate his socio-political philosophy?

(P.S. I already know what I'm going to do ... maybe having access to U/C benefits during his period of unemployment will make him a more compassionate person. And he's gonna need it because getting fired from his position will put just about every non-McDonalds out of reach.)

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply Interesting Decision to be made ... (Original post)
1StrongBlackMan Apr 2012 OP
Jackpine Radical Apr 2012 #1
wandy Apr 2012 #2
1StrongBlackMan Apr 2012 #4
wandy Apr 2012 #7
monmouth Apr 2012 #3
1StrongBlackMan Apr 2012 #5
MineralMan Apr 2012 #6
saras Apr 2012 #8

Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 06:30 PM

1. You came to about the same place I would have.

If we were to limit the practice of mercy & compassion only to those we think deserve it, we ourselves would be the poorer. Every such act makes the world a better place.

And there's the business of modeling mercy for one who knows so little of it.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 06:46 PM

2. From what you have said this would be one of the first people to deny unemployment benifets......

He would also be one of the first to allow others to suffer in the name of his Ideology.
Don't fire him....
That allows unemployment benefits.
Let him resign...
Then he can see the worth of his teabagging beliefs.
No, that ilk will never become more compassionate.
They will just bitch about how unfair the government is to THEM!

You reap what you sew.

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Response to wandy (Reply #2)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 07:36 PM

4. And the funny thing is ...

He works (for the time being) for government!

I remember his glee when the GOP swept 2010 ... His comment was, "Good now we can shrink the size of government!"

I asked him, "You do realize that you work FOR government, right? And you do realize that, on those days that you take off, the court doesn't close down, right?"

He didn't seem to make the connection. I guess for teaparty government employees, the government is everyone except them.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #4)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 07:59 PM

7. Not to tell you what to do.......

At one point, heaven knows why, I found myself with 20 some people on my team.
Some older and wiser.
Some younger.
I got to play 'den mother'.
Hell I even got to go bail once.
And we did have some royal foo-foo-rahs from time to time as to how to approach a problem.
No matter our personal differences, we were all working toward the same end.
This person does not sound like a team player.
This person does not sound as if the end results are more important than his own ideology.
Do not feal badley of you're self....
If you let the chips fall where they may.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 06:55 PM

3. You sound very ..gasp...fair and balanced (sorry) in your decision-process..n/t

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Response to monmouth (Reply #3)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 07:41 PM

5. I tell my daughter ...

"I spend my (work) day telling employees, 'Yes ... you really do have to do what your supervisor tells you to do; so long as it's not unlawful, immoral or unethical.' And I spend the rest of my day telling management, 'I'm not telling you, you can't do that; but if you do, the law suit is gonna read like this'."

She gets a kick outta that.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 07:44 PM

6. Do what you know is right to do.

It's your job, and I'm sure you'll do that job correctly.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 08:08 PM

8. Put it this way. If you succeeded, he'd still be working there, and he'd likely do it again.

 

If that was your goal, then you did the right thing.

it's really not your business what his socio-political philosophy is, and it has no business in your decision-making.

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