Unemployment Hearing

So July 21, 2008 was any other ordinary day. Except for one thing. It was finally time to take my case before the judge and put everything I've already had to say about Behr on the record once and for all. I got to have my day in court, as it were. The process was less than fascinating, though still somewhat interesting.

For those who don't know already, back in March Behr sacked me from the IT department after the department supervisor was able to fabricate enough of a case to get it past HR. It involved a whole bunch of lies about how I was supposedly insubordinate, defiant, had a nasty attitude, and was being a basic pain in everyone's ass. Those of you know me online might think "Hey, that's just Samson being his usual opinionated self" and you'd be fair to think so. I know most of you won't buy it but in work life I have always been nothing but respectful to my peers and to my supervisors. The whole case was a crock of shit.

Anyway. I was expecting something a bit more formal from a hearing. You know, courthouse, judge, reporter, some nice wooden tables, and a few people sitting around in the seats. All there was was me, the judge, and the enemy. The judge opened things up by giving a brief accounting of the evidence he'd already received, read the list of claims being made, and informed us that the proceedings were being recorded. All of this taking place in something more akin to a simple conference room. There wasn't even a court reporter. The judge asked us both for an opening synopsis of our side of the story. There was the truth, and then there was the lies from the HR rep they sent to defend the claim. I did my best to give my recollection of the events leading up to being sacked, but as I had already sent them my side in two separate type written documents, I didn't elaborate much beyond that. The judge read over the statements and I guess was happy with it as he turned everything from that point forward over to heavily questioning the HR rep.

We sat in there for almost exactly one hour - the time slot given to the judge for my case. Who knew these things were so quick! She tried to bury him under stacks and stacks of papers supposedly detailing my list of offenses that were so grievous I was causing financial and other harm to the company. Or put simply, blah blah blah Samson is a flake blah blah blah. I had nothing to counter any of this with, and I'm beginning to suspect the judge knew this. When he asked me about it, all I could tell him is I hadn't been given any copies of anything other than the two things I filed rebuttals over. As is typical, HR tried to have mountains more unsubstantiated crap admitted into evidence that was untrue or greatly exaggerated. I told the judge as much. I have a feeling speaking the plain truth was all it took. When she tried to insist all her "evidence" be entered into the record the judge flatly refused by telling her there was just too much to bother reading it all. At about this point in time, I'm predicting a win. Her mountain of corroborating evidence gone, she has no case as she wasn't present during any management sessions that happened after January 2, which was covered in my second rebuttal. I think the judge also found it highly suspicious that none of the paperwork had been signed by me. Perhaps it has no legal value without my signature? If so then obviously I was right not to give them that.

When time was up, we gave our closing statements and ended there. I guess she still feels guilty about what happened because she ended by heaping praise on me for how good a job I did and about how nice a person I was to work with. I wonder if the judge picked up on this huge inconsistency since HER ENTIRE CASE was built on what a complete fuckup I was. :)

Ok, so fast forward now 2 months. I've been waiting, and waiting, and waiting.... and waiting some more for the state to rule on this one way or the other. Well, that day finally came in the form of a "claim denied" notice. More or less telling me "see previous decision in April" or some shit. They basically repeated the same BS I was handed several months ago and once more claimed I lied and that I was insubordinate and all this other crap. It's like the judge never bothered to even consider anything. I wonder if he just dug the file up out of his pile the other day and stamped it rejected because he was bored. In any case I've files for what's called a Board Appeal with the state of California. Basically a review board looks at the case and decides if the judge was a moron or not. I still can't fathom how this wouldn't be possible now, but whatever. I also mentioned that my Title VII civil rights may have been violated for being punished by the employer when no clear and consistent policies exist, and punishments are handed out with no clearly defined reasoning to back them up. Oh, and one other interesting fact they may be interested in. No oath was administered during the hearing 2 months ago. That seems to be to be a bit of a protocol problem. Perhaps why the judge simply barfed up the same exact text that was on my initial denial. Either way, we shall see now just how honest the state is. Who would ever guess it's such a pain in the ass to get YOUR OWN DAMN MONEY when you need it!
"It is pointless to resist, my son." -- Darth Vader
"Resistance is futile." -- The Borg
"Mother's coming for me in the dragon ships. I don't like these itchy clothes, but I have to wear them or it frightens the fish." -- Thurindil

Well. I guess that's that then.

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Posted on Sep 26, 2008 12:00 am by Samson in: | 2 comment(s) [Closed]
Condolences for having to go through the process, but now that you've completed the initiation, welcome to the club.

So a little birdie told me that the manager who engineered my termination has herself been terminated.

So I guess there's some level of justice in this world after all. I'd like to think that call I made to the Masco Ethics Commission had something to do with it.... :)

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