Disciplinary Disparity Started by jsbryant75 , Dec 15 2013 09:45 PM Please log in to reply 2 replies to this topic 1 posts Posted 15 December 2013 - 09:45 PM I was a Paramedic employed by a North Carolina county government. I was terminated because we were busy and I had a patient complaining of abdominal cramping, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever and opted to allow a basic ambulance to transport her to the ER after she couldn't get an appointment with her personal doctor. This allowed us to remain in our coverage area to answer other calls. She ended up needing surgery and I was immediately terminated for failing to initiate an IV and administer medication for nausea. Other Paramedics continue working there after they were caught having sex in exchange for food on camera at a local restaurant while on duty and in uniform. This same Paramedic applied a transcutaneous pacemaker to a patient who didn't even require it and listened to the patient's torturous screams all the way to the hospital and never administered sedation or pain medication. What are my options for this disparity of discipline? Also, in October, I was suspended for 72 hours because I held a discussion with a paramedic student about a recent patient and told the student of the patient's age, sex, history, and current condition and treatment. The patient's name, address, date of birth, none of that specific information was given, but my employer insisted this was a HIPAA violation because the employer knew who the patient was based on my description. Instead of allowing me off for the 72 hours, they deducted the time from my paycheck for hours that I had already worked. To top everything off, my immediate supervisor gave me the highest score that anyone had received on an employee evaluation on October 1. In October, I was also injured and filed an incident report, but not a worker's comp claim b/c my boss's wife's best friend slammed on brakes and through me into the floor injuring my shoulder and I complained about her. After that, my boss became very critical of everything I did and seemed to look for reasons to create a paper trail of disciplinary actions so that he could terminate me. 16,386 posts Posted 15 December 2013 - 11:38 PM It would be illegal under federal law to terminate you or treat you differently from other employees if the reason for the termination/differing treatment was your race, color, national origin, religion, age (if you are at least age 40), sex, disability, or genetic test information. North Carolina law makes it illegal if the reason was your race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex or disability.
There are two issues raised by your post. The first is what the real reason was for your termination. Your boss says that it was because you didn't properly treat a patient. You seem to to believe it was because you complained about his wife. Either way, that?s not illegal discrimination because the reason wasn?t one of the ones I listed in the first paragraph above.
The second issue you raise is alleged discrimination because you were fired but other employees were not fired. The employees who had sex on the job aren't relevant; that situation is much different than yours. If you had had sex on the job like they did and you were fired but they were not, then that might raise an issue of discrimination. An employer is free to decide that sex on the job won't result in termination but that improperly treating a patient is justification for termination. The employee who improperly treated the patient with the pacemaker is a much closer situation. The issue here would be why was he not fired for the mistake in treatment of his patient but you were fired for your alleged mistake in treating your patient? If the reason was one of the things I mentioned in the first paragraph above (your race, color, national origin, etc) then that is illegal discrimination. But if the real reason was that your boss was ticked off at you for complaining about his wife and wasn't ticked off at the other guy, that?s not illegal discrimination.
You might have additional protection, however, under state or county civil service laws or, if you are a union member, under whatever contract your union has with the county. For information on that, you may wish to seek advice from an employment law attorney in NC who is familiar with the rules relating to state and local government employees. <br>For the original version including any supplementary images or video, visit http://boards.answers.findlaw.com/index.php/topic/228546-disciplinary-disparity/