Ok, need urgent help again! Need somebody to read this and comment!

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by MidwestMom, Jan 8, 2013.

  1. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I applied for unemployment for the days they did not let me work (plus Christmas break, which I'll get). I however have to talk to an Unemployment Counselor in order to receive unemployment. That means I have to tell my side of the story as to why I am claiming unemployment. Is this any good? I'm up for any suggestions, especially from business people or anyone who has a clue about how unemployment works. This is the story as I know it. I'm going to read this to the person I get, because otherwise I'll get nervous and stammer. Thanks!!!!

    I have worked at Head Start since Oct. 2010. During that time, I have never called in sick once. I have filled in on other routes almost every time I was asked. I have followed t he rules. I have bus aided for four other bus drivers consistently and have at least subbed for every driver there. Everyone has seen my work. Nobody ever complained about me, my treatment of them, or my treatment of the children. I was never disciplined or written up. I did not talk back to my bosses. I did what they told me to do.

    This year I was paired with a bus driver who has been with HS a year. She did not complain about me until last week. She herself did not follow the rules a lot. Suddenly I got called into my bosses office with a laundry list of allegations from one bus route ride with this woman. I was so taken back that I didn't know how to respond. Nothing was true. I answered every question. It was hard sometimes because I did not remember the route as being exceptional in any way. Nothing unusual happened on it. My boss decided s he believed my bus driver, not me. Her investigation was simply believing the woman. She did not ask anybody else who I had worked with, which was everybody else, if these things had ever happened to them when I was working with them.

    I was so intimidated at firsts that I said maybe I should just be a sub. But by the end of the conversation with my boss, everything seemed all right so I forgot about it and went home. My boss called me again and said that John, who runs Head Start, was not happy with what he'd heard and that I needed to be a sub. I was called in to sign that I voluntarily agreed to be a sub. At that point, I called a lawyer who told me not to sign anything if I wanted to keep my job, which I did. I did agree to sign if they took the word voluntary out, but they wouldn't so I didn't. The lawyer had told me to be sure they told me my status that day, but they never called me back. As it stands right now, I am still employed, but not working although I am willing and able. Therefore, I am applying for unemployment. All I know is, I had to sign the form in order to be a sub. That makes me still this bus driver's aide, but they won't let me work.
  2. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm sure, my friend, you will have "expert" family members signing in soon to guide you. Reading your post I know it is the truth. on the other hand I am not well informed in the area of unexmployment. My only experience was thirty plus years ago when I was informed by a VP that my boss the P had told him to let me go. The VP (whom I liked) advised me that I would be able to draw unemployment if I were "fired" but not if I "quit". The idea of accepting the fact that I had been fired was a major trauma but based solely on his advice that is what I did and I did draw unemployment which allowed me to feed my kids.

    There are so many "vague" and unfamiliar aspects of these situations that I am NOT weighing in. Others will be along soon with solid advice. I think you are wonderful and am I'm sure the best advice will come from the family. DDD
  3. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    You may get your unemployment. It's been my experience that many employers don't fight the unemployment because they don't want the employee to sue. I'm sure some people, here, will be able to tell you their horror stories, but I don't think it's the norm. I have a feeling the school district won't fight it.
  4. TeDo

    TeDo Guest

    Absolutely do not sign a voluntary quit. Make them "officially" fire you. From what I remember, you can't get unemployment unless you have been "officially" fired. Their point is that if you end up getting hired back, they owe you pay for the days you weren't allowed to work without actually being terminated. Agreeing to be a sub gets HS off the hook for unemployment. Talk to your lawyer before you meet with unemployment. That's jmho based on my experiences with unemployment.
  5. KTMom91

    KTMom91 Well-Known Member

    Back in 1996, I was fired for no reason, and even though the employer told Unemployment I had been fired for gross misconduct, there were no write-ups or anything to back that up. I got unemployment after talking to the counselor. It's just a formality, but don't sign a voluntary quit. You won't be eligible then.
  6. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I'm Canadian, and a whole different system, so can't directly advise, except to say that the whole approach and tone of what you wrote above is much better presented. It seems like you are getting your warrior mom wings under you, and thinking more clearly - and this is a GOOD thing!
  7. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    I'm a Human Resource manager and at the company where I work now, we have only had three employees in almost 17 years apply for unemployment. Even the one who voluntarily quit (we needed her 9-5, she wanted 6:30-2:30 after three years of working 9-5, which wouldn't work for us). All three received unemployment...even the one we actually fought (the lady with the weird hours). My personal experience has been that unemployment usually results in favor of the employee....most of the time.

    You might want to do a little digging around and find out if this particular branch of Head Start has any skeletons in their closet...perhaps this has happened before or maybe they've been sued. See what you can find out-search the web, go to the library and do a search on past news pieces or even check your local court records. If they have a history of poor practice, the caseworker will know about it, believe me, and they will settle in your favor.
  8. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Well, now I feel bummed. Some lady who used to work at Head Start and was also downgraded to a sub without warning and with no misconduct said that she tried to get unemployment because she wasn't unemployed. She was a sub. And they will never fire you. They won't call you to sub either. Maybe they will once a month. They wait for you to quit. So now I'm not sure I have a case. What do you do with that? I can't make them fire me and I can't make them call me to give me work either. And I can't afford a lawyer to fight this case for me. I got advice from a friend, but he's not an employment attorney. All I can do is state my case, but this company will not fire me officially. They just won't use me.
  9. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    A drastic cut in hours does allow one to claim unemployment insurance. You would simply have to report the income each week that they actually called you into sub.

    Of course, the fact that they want to keep you on as a sub kinda kills their 'fired for misconduct' claim...

    I would tell the UI interviewer that the driver made unfounded accusations that you were rude to customers but that the HS did not speak to the customers nor any of the other drivers you have been paired with and, without investigation, removed you from the route but has offered you a spot on the sub list, which may provide you with 2-4 hours per MONTH of work, if they called you.

    I would NOT get into everything you had in the draft of the letter. UI doesn't care. They just want to know (1) are you unemployed (2) do you have a disqualifying issue and (3) are you actively looking for work each week.
  10. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    She should have appealed.
  11. DownTheRabbitHole

    DownTheRabbitHole New Member

    I don't have any experience with filing personally but have dealt with claims obo the employer as part of my job. I would be very cautious when it comes to signing any waivers, releases etc. Did they give you any job description, policies and such when you were hired? If they weren't able to accommodate you by switching route, schedule and or partner driver and are just not giving you hours I would certainly file for unemployment. Employers can dispute claims but without being able to prove with well documented incident reports and warnings it will be hard to dispute your claim. I believe when the employer has to respond to the unemployment agency they have to provide your hours and payment history so unemployment will be able to verify by your last pay history your termination.
  12. Signorina

    Signorina Guest

    Hi mwm, I gave you some information on your first thread regarding our state's unemployment criteria. The fact that they are downgrading you to a sub (non voluntarily) will work in your favor. It means that you are eligible for rehire and suggests you are not at fault. You can collect unemployment and be available as a sub. If you are called in as a sub, your UE will be reduced by that amount you earned during that claim period. Just be careful that you do not refuse to take most of the sub hours offered to you, because your UE is contingent upon being available and actively seeking work.

    on my new iPad now- don't have the hang of it yet- but the WI DWD website has a faqs section that explains it all. I think I linked it on the first thread.

    Don't get too detailed, tell the counselor that you were downsized and offered un-guaranteed, random sub hours as they need you. UE will take it from there. If you were bad at your job or untrustworthy or at fault- why on earth would they want to retain you as a sub? . Now you understand that they wanted you to sign a "voluntary reduction in hours to substitute status", but you didn't feel that was right since it wasn't voluntary. And you don't lie. And you truly hope it wasn't an attempt by them to make you ineligible to file your rightful unemployment claim.

    That's your story; stick to it.
  13. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Signorina is right on. You can get unemployment for the time not working your "usual" hours while still employed as a sub. Keeping you as a sub is the employers way of trying to get you leave on your own and therefore not be qualified for unemployment. Your local unemployment office will do all the work - just state your claim simply and let them take over. As an employer, I agree with Jo, unemployment rarely favors the employer....I've had a few cases I've won, but they've been when issues have been very well documented with witnesses or the employee did not qualify due to length of employment.
  14. DaisyFace

    DaisyFace Love me...Love me not

    Oh my goodness - I think it's even simpler than this!

    When husband went from full-time work to "they called him in when they could"....he promptly applied for unemployment with the explanation "They don't have any work for me today."

    If you've been working full-time, and now they say they will call you if there is work, then "They don't have any work for me today." The end. You get a check.