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Let go without anyone telling me?


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I work in a warehouse and go to school at night. It was advertised as a part time position but they required us to work 8-5 monday through friday. This was difficult being in school but I dealt with it because I needed the money. The entire time I was treated differently by the staff. They would all call me "white boy" or say "you think you're white" including my supervisor. We are all African American. They are all from a depressed major metropolitan american city you may have heard about. I am from the surrounding county which is upper middle class. I suppose this is evident by the way I speak and dress but I treated everyone with respect. I came to work on time, worked hard, and left.

 

My supervisor really didn't like me. He called me a f*ggot and a retard regularly. When throwing a fit he would get an inch away from my face and scream to intimidate me. I wasn't because I'm a lot younger and bigger than he is, but this is absurdly unprofessional. Every time I made a mistake, no matter how miniscule or understandable he would attempt to belittle me. He even has made comments about me going to college saying "you're wasting your money, you won't graduate".

 

So out of the blue he casually tells us on a friday that he "wont need a few of us for a few weeks." I was appalled, I don't work there for fun. Missing an entire paycheck is not something my finances can withstand. He assured us that once the work picked up again it would be steady with no interruptions.

 

So during those three weeks I worked 1-2 days. I would call every morning if he had anything for me and the answer was usually no. The days I worked I found out there was a group of guys who has been working consistently, most of them who had been hired after me. My attendance record is better than them, I have my own vehicle so I was more reliable, and I knew the job better. I didn't give anyone any disrespect, thats why I believe he showed them preference because they're "lifers" and I'm not.

 

My finances took a huge hit but I held on, filled my days with more studying. The work began to pick up again and I figured everything was back to normal. On last friday I was cleaning up some cardboard boxes on my way out. He says "Why the **** are you carrying them by hand? Use a cart!" Which was behind a stack of pallets that went to the ceiling and was impossible to see. I didn't say anything, finished, and started to leave.

 

Then he says "hey, guess what?"

me: "what?"

boss: "don't F-ing call me on monday. Or tuesday for that matter. I'll F-ing call you on tuesday and tell you when I need you"

Me: "Okay?" and I left.

 

I was pretty irritated, thats two more days I wouldn't get paid. Tuesday night came and no call. I called early on wednesday and he didn't answer (this is his cellphone). I call again wednesday evening and it rang twice before ending. I called again this morning and no answer, this evening and no answer.

 

So I have resigned that I no longer have a job there. Which is OK, it messes up my finances but it truly is a hostile work environment. But can he do this, fire me without talking to me? Is there any law against this? I'm less concerned about my money and more offended. I tolerated a lot of verbal abuse in there and he just threw me away like I was nothing.

 

I'm so mad that they did this. If I were to quit abruptly everyone would have said how unprofessional I am. But tomorrow will be friday and I will have not worked a single day and he hasn't said a word to me in a week. Is there any course of action I can take here?

 

I don't want to beg for my job, I've already begun interviewing at other places.

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Does your company have a Human Resources department? They would be the normal group to address these concerns. Another option would be to go to your bosses boss, if you know who that is. Or even another supervisor, if there is one. At this point is sounds like you wouldnt have much to lose.

 

If neither of these are an option, then you may just have to chalk this up as a learning lesson. This is a big reason why we go to college; so that we domt have to put up with this crap throughout our adulthoods.

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File for unemployment to see if you're eligible. They'll calculate based on number of hours you've worked over the number of weeks in their base calendar. They'll do this automatically provided your wages were paid on the books--it's not something you need to piece together by finding old pay stubs.

 

Once the job is notified that you've applied, they'll need to pay into that fund--so you may find them rehiring you pretty fast if they don't want to pay.

 

Since your boss was such a jerk, he could try to block your unemployment by saying you refused work, so documents all your calls in for work.

 

You're right, this isn't a typical work environment, so you're best off working elsewhere. You may want to fight this, but you'd be up against fighters--and you may want to consider instead that the price you've paid is your tuition for learning that there are places where you don't want to work.

 

Head high, and save the energy of your offense to spend on someone who will actually matter in your larger scheme of life.

 

Pick your battles with care.

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I'm sorry you've had to go through this your supervisor seems to care more about bullying and belittling people than doing a good job. I agree with seeking out help in Human Resources. Prioritise the fact that you are not sure whether you are even employed anymore and the nonchalant way your supervisor is treating the organisation of his team. I'm sure his bosses would be disappointed to learn that he is a liability in the company and does not care for his employees. He sounds like he takes his own personal issues out on you, like insisting you want to be a certain race just because you are motivated to do more than he is. He is therefore implying that African Americans do not want to succeed or amount to anything - this is his own mindset and is probably threatened by how opposed you are to this mindset. It is the people who think this about their own race and culture that keep them down - not others outside, he probably has some kind of chip on his shoulder and blames everyone else rather than himself.

 

You'll find that people like him dig graves for themselves, without anybody elses help. One day he will slip up majorly and it will be all on him. In the meantime you will have found yourself an enjoyable place of work, and with the help from your studies and new qualifications he will probably end up in a position much lower than you. Think of this and find yourself a new place to earn some money. I would write him an email or a letter letting him know that due to lack of information, you have had no choice but to leave the company. In an email, this can be documented to prove that you tried at least.

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I'm going to check into unemployment but I believe you must be at a position for six months first. I was hired in late july and if that's the case I won't qualify. I will talk to HR but I believe it will fall on deaf ears; the warehouse is attached to an office building and those folks don't care much about us. I actually found out from a friend that we were hired as temps, which is also infuriating because that was not mentioned once and I didn't go through a temp agency.

 

I'm just going to focus on school and ask my family for help until I get a new job. And you're right, this is exactly why I'm going to school so I don't have to deal with this BS for the rest of my life.

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