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Old 05-02-2013, 07:35 PM  
Deberg_1990 Deberg_1990 is offline
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Pregnant T-Mobile Employee had to Clock Out to Use Toilet

http://gma.yahoo.com/blogs/abc-blogs...100119456.html



Kristi Rifkin had been working at T-Mobile Call Center in Nashville for four years when she got pregnant with her third child. She says she loved her job.

"I had a great run," Rifkin, 40, told ABC News. "I was making bonus. T-Mobile was good to me. I never had a problem getting a schedule I wanted. I enjoyed it. I had even left another company to work at T-Mobile because they had great benefits."

But her good will toward the company changed once she got pregnant.
According to Rifkin, the pregnancy-her second (she has one stepson)-was a difficult one, and she was going to the doctor twice a week, seeing both a regular obstetrician and a high-risk obstetrician. She was also required to drink "tons and tons" of water - which, in turn, resulted in frequent trips to the bathroom. This did not sit well with T-Mobile, she said.

"They give you two 15 minute breaks and a 30 minute lunch," said Rifkin. "If you can't take care of your biological needs in that time period, you don't go."
Before her pregnancy, this wasn't an issue. But as she explained in a blog post on MomsRising.org, frequent jaunts to the bathroom would cut into what was known in the call center world as "adherence" - a metric that measures the degree to which employees meet their quota for being on the phone.

"You have different numbers you have to meet each month, and if you don't meet them they can fire you," she said. "The thinking is that if you're off the phone and you're not doing what you're supposed to be doing, then there are customers waiting to talk to you."

She tried to hold off on eating and drinking; she needed the health insurance the job provided. But the baby was suffering, Rifkin said, and she had to start drinking water again.

Finally, she said, her supervisor pulled her aside and told her to get a note from her doctor explaining that she needed to go the bathroom often. "At that point, I thought my head was going to launch off my shoulders," said Rifkin. "'Are you serious? I need to get a note from my doctor to go to the toilet?' This is a basic biological need.'"

But Rifkin did as she was told; she got the doctor's note and cleared it with Human Resources. She was told that she could use the rest room any time she needed to, she said, but that she would have to clock out. When she returned from that bathroom, she would have to clock back in. "This meant I was out of work for five minutes," she said. She had to write the hours down and turn it into her supervisor, just to make sure she wasn't taking advantage of the situation.

"I ended up using my vacation time to use the bathroom," she said.
But she still wasn't eating and drinking as she was supposed to. Her blood pressure skyrocketed. She was stressed and anxious.

She finally went on the Family Medical Leave Act, which requires employers to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave to eligible employees, seven weeks before her son, Ian, was born, on May 14, 2010. A month and a half after she returned to work she was fired, she said.

The reason? Rifkin says she was summarily fired after she failed to remove an extra-charge feature from a customer's account, the commission for which was 12 cents. She says the rare error occurred when she either forgot to remove the charge or removed another charge instead.

She got no severance, she said, and now pays for medical expenses out of pocket.
Rifkin said she has no plans to sue the company; it's too expensive, and Tennessee is an at-will employment state. "They can fire you for any reason," she said
The US. Department of Labor reports that only eight states require paid rest periods and Tennessee is not among them.

"There is no specific legal requirement that requires employers to let their employees use the restroom," Paula Brantner, the executive director of Workplace Fairness, which provides legal information about workers rights. However, "If a pregnant woman is the only employee being forced to clock out, and they don't require males or non-pregnant females to do so, it would seem to me that would be pregnancy discrimination."

In an email statement to ABC News, T-Mobile spokesperson Glenn A. Zaccara said that he could not comment on a specific individual. But "T-Mobile employees enjoy generous benefits including paid-time-off and short and long-term disability coverage," he said. "The company has leave of absence policies in line with regulatory requirements."
Rifkin was not impressed.

"I'm done with T-Mobile," she said. "I don't want anything to do with them anymore."
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Old 05-03-2013, 08:50 AM   #61
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"Bitch should have never got pregnant. Her choice. I say, let her and the baby starve to death. Entitlements are killing this country. Leech!" - The CP DC Section
Oh, how cute. DC here in the lounge.
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Old 05-03-2013, 08:51 AM   #62
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I don't think they are discriminating. She's being held to the same standard as everyone else.
The problem is the rules need to be enforced equally, to the benefit/detriment of all employees. We all know that in a business there are high/medium/low achievers. I can't tell you how many times I do a slow burn because I get someone elses problems to solve because I'll get it done.
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Old 05-03-2013, 08:51 AM   #63
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Reasonable accommodation.
I think they've made a "reasonable accommodation", she's allowed to go to the bathroom as much as she wants so long as she clocks out.

She is not disabled, her pregnancy has no impact on her ability to perform any of the essential functions of a call center job.

Paying someone who isn't working is not a reasonable accommodation. Allowing her unlimited bathroom breaks when no one else gets this privilege is, I think.

If I were her manager I would be looking the other way just as good business, but this isn't an ADA issue
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Old 05-03-2013, 08:52 AM   #64
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Reasonable accommodation.
You don't know how many times an hour she was saying she had to use the bathroom, so how do you know whether they were making reasonable accommodations or not?
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Old 05-03-2013, 08:56 AM   #65
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My friends used to joke about "Being paid to take a shit".


I told them how much they were costing their employer per year by pooping on the clock. 40 employees x 15 minutes = 600 minutes of work lost. 600 minutes = 10 hours x $20/hour = $200 lost per day.

$200x300 days = 60K. Shocking.
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Old 05-03-2013, 09:06 AM   #66
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I made it a week and a half at a call center a long time ago. Some place in Lawrence KS when I first moved there for college. Most boring job ever, I couldn't stand it at all. They weren't micro managing the shit out of us or anything, but it was just too ****ing boring sitting there for 8 hours on a phone. God, I couldn't stand that job at all.
Affinitas?
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Old 05-03-2013, 09:20 AM   #67
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Originally Posted by cockeyes View Post
I don't think they are discriminating. She's being held to the same standard as everyone else.
That's the tough part... at a job like that, it's so easy to tell if people around you are doing their job, and if one person gets the benefit of 2 or 3 extra breaks (even if it's just going to the bathroom), people will complain and try to stretch the rules as far as possible.

Of course, the article focuses on 'going to the bathroom' to generate attention, even though it's pretty clear that the doctor's note was about the requirement to drink a ton of water. It just sounds more ridiculous to say she needed a note to go to the bathroom. Anyone could drink a ton of water at work to avoid doing their job. Clocking out is kind of dumb, IMO, depending on how often we're talking about... it's probably better for the company to just let that slide or ask her to simply work an extra 15-30 minutes/day instead of possibly creating a media shitstorm over something like that.
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Old 05-03-2013, 10:26 AM   #68
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Affinitas?
yup, that's the name of it.
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:13 PM   #69
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The male employees did not have to clock out everytime they went it was not being enforced equally
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:16 PM   #70
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Well honestly, if she chose a different field then she wouldn't have to deal with this. She can go back to school and get a degree in something that doesn't require that BS.
First in with shut up stupid.
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:16 PM   #71
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This kind of treatment is an everyday occurrence. Not shocking at all. When large corporations continue to buy up the smaller more worker friendly companies and implement corporate policies this is what happens. Everything sets a precedent and employees are now numbers, not people or coworkers.

This is another example of the destruction of the American dream.
Gotta show that growth story to keep the stock price up and keep the executive bonuses flowing. Can't just run a nice profitable company and pay out a dividend or anything. So if your core businesses isn't growing you have to always be squeezing more out of your existing customers or employees. Fun times.
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:26 PM   #72
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Gotta show that growth story to keep the stock price up and keep the executive bonuses flowing. Can't just run a nice profitable company and pay out a dividend or anything. So if your core businesses isn't growing you have to always be squeezing more out of your existing customers or employees. Fun times.
Requiring adherence from call center employees is not about profit margin. It is about running a call center.

Without schedule adherence standards, no call center would operate efficiently or correctly.
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:28 PM   #73
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I think they've made a "reasonable accommodation", she's allowed to go to the bathroom as much as she wants so long as she clocks out.

She is not disabled, her pregnancy has no impact on her ability to perform any of the essential functions of a call center job.

Paying someone who isn't working is not a reasonable accommodation. Allowing her unlimited bathroom breaks when no one else gets this privilege is, I think.

If I were her manager I would be looking the other way just as good business, but this isn't an ADA issue
So, just don't get pregnant, and you'll be fine.
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:34 PM   #74
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So, just don't get pregnant, and you'll be fine.
If the doctor puts her on bedrest and she can't come in at all, should they still have to pay her, in your opinion?
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:34 PM   #75
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If the doctor puts her on bedrest and she can't come in at all, should they still have to pay her, in your opinion?
No, that's what FMLA is for.
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