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Work and illness (it's long sorry)

Sep 23, 2016 1:42 AM

As some of you know I've been having a lot of trouble at work. First about my fibro and now about chemical sensitivities. I finally snapped at my bosses boss last year and told him to fuck off. This was immediately after he told me that i had to plan my bosses going away party. But previously he'd told me to take a tic tac and my pain would go away (on a day when i had the heating pad and tens machine going and was trying my hardest to get through my shift). He'd also told me that i was causing my pain by believing i was in pain and because i didn't smile enough. And he gave me pointed looks when talking about his dog having arthritis and how the dog wasn't faking. This was before the chemical sensitivities.
Over 2 years ago the airport changed how they process the deicing fluid and ever since then it had been coming into the building. Of course wind has to be in a certain direction and speed for it to come into the building because we are a long way away from the holding ponds. When it first happened myself and another guy formally requested they upgrade the hvac system so that stuff couldn't come into the building because it is vile and unhealthy. Fast forward to this April when it was in the building for a week straight and that week of exposure overloaded my already struggling system and hello chemical sensitivities.
Well theses chemicals from the airport fuck with my brain. They make me a rage monster while simultaneously making me want to kill myself, they make it so i can't think clearly. So while reacting and putting in my leave i wrote under reason for sick leave: chemicals from the airport, can't live like this. The next day it came in again and i sent an email (while reacting to the crap) to most of the managers in the building asking for something to get done because i can't have this stuff coming into the building on the night we do a software upgrade on the main air traffic control system. Apparently i threatened everyone with cancelling the load, i still feel i was explaining why it was critical that stuff not be able to enter the building.
Also i try to manage my pain as naturally as possible, which means essential oil blends that contain peppermint. I don't want to have to leave work because my neck and shoulder are tight and causing pain, so i apply the oil blend so that it's less painful for a while.
So I've gotten talked to about my issues.
1. They don't have doctors notes for any of my conditions - lie! I gave them one after my fight with bosses boss. It covered lifting and overtime in a very vague way which mostly said if i said i couldn't do it at that time then i couldn't do it. But apparently doctors notes expire after 6 months on file and get thrown out. Even though it's a damn chronic condition. They don't have one for the chemical sensitivities because I'm waiting for them to give me disability paperwork for the 'accommodations' i asked for, which they said they were going to do months ago. Apparently being the one to keep asking for the air purifier that everyone wanted makes it a disability accommodation.
2. My inconsistencies make it look like im faking and almost everyone in the group has complained about me. Ok i can kind of see where he is coming from with my one time use of oils after getting slammed with this chemical sensitivities thing but if he did any research or talk to me before reacting he would know it's a great pain management tool. I talked to probably half of the group after my conversation with my boss and maybe 1 or 2 have complained about me but most just make fun of me or talk about me when I'm not around so he must have overheard some of that and taken it as complaints or he's trying to isolate me so I'm easier to break. And fibro is highly inconsistent... am i not supposed to do my best on any given day? My best today might be close to someone else or it might be substantially less, should i do less on my good days just so i appear more consistent?
3. If i can't live like this then i need to work elsewhere. Ok I probably should have put on my leave can't live like this but something needs to be done. Something should have been done 2 years ago when it was first brought up. Another centre got their air scrubbers fully installed within 3 weeks of their complaints, mind you a chicken processing plant opened up next door so it was 24/7 smell issues not intermittent mostly on evenings and midnights. I don't know. Go elsewhere sounded like a threat to me.
4. I crossed a line and made a serious threat when i sent out that email to several managers... i was asking for help and it had to go out to the ops management because if it stayed just within the tech group or facilities nothing would have gotten done. Because i sent it to the general manager and the operations manager the air intake got closed and someone else came in late incase i needed to go home. I was told not to email anyone outside of my immediate group and to never use the words chemicals or poisoned again.
I'm sure I'm missing stuff but i think i got my point across. Anyways, i felt attacked when the boss talked to me on August 31st. I had just gotten back to work from getting my trailer. I had anxiety about going to work and didn't understand why but I guess part of me knew i was getting in trouble. I cried all night after that meeting and i still feel my job is in danger. Part of me regrets getting the trailer now because if i get fired we won't be able to make house payments and will have to sell it.
I wrote a letter to my boss explaining how his words caused harm to me. I haven't sent it yet. One of my coworkers is proof reading it. This coworker is also telling me i need to contact top top management and get them involved. My work centre has a history of mistreatment of people who are 'different'. They have paid 4 guys to shut up and go away after several years of fighting and another guy couldn't take their crap and parked his car on the side of the highway and walked into traffic. Unfortunately I'm super sensitive and fragile and would probably break like that one guy did before they'd break and pay me to go away.
So i guess I'm asking for advice. The job market is crap and there is nothing out there so i can't quit. Should i just keep my head down and hope everything goes away even though I'm being told 5-10 years before the hvac will be looked at? Should I give my boss that letter and watch the shit hit the fan, because they will react poorly and go into attack mode even though they shouldn't? Should I contact the highest management in the company and inform them of the situation and the track record of local hr and how many times they've failed people?
I'm already stressed about the stress this is going to cause if it gets worse, but I'm scared that even if i do nothing is still going to get worse.

Sep 23, 2016 6:36 AM

OMFG...theyre a joke!! I have unfortunately been subjected to bullying from my now ex employers, so i get the anxiety and not knowing what to do for the best because it doesnt matter what you say, as they'll twist it to their advantage somehow....

So, im in the uk, and ur usa? (I apologise if iv remembered incorrectly). Going on that basis, as in, i dont know what laws you have, i would:
- make a chronological list, including dates, times, witnesses etc of meetings, emails or whatever else you have had with them-make it as detailed as possible. I appreciate this will be time consuming but it will be worth it.
- keep the list up to date
- umm i possibly wouldnt send your email just yet-try and get legal advice, or google or something and then you can amend your email to include 'what you belief' is them breaching the law...(i would use the phrase 'what you belief' or something like that so as to possibly not make it libellous-again, try to get advice perhaps...
- seriously consider taking them to court....i dont know the legal system, but in the uk, what you have mentioned would likely be breaches of uk law.
- re your strength...believe in yourself you can fight them!! You CAN do it if you choose too...see it as a psychological game...as in, its a game of who quits first...(obviously make sure you have legal arguements as otherwise i wouldnt recommend wasting your time or energy/health on 'fighting' them)

Oh keep copies of your emails etc and make sure meetings are documented.

Or, if you dont wish to do the above, start looking for another job whilst sticking it out....you will make the right decision for you... :)

Sep 23, 2016 8:48 AM

Do you belong to a union? If not is there a health authority you could report to. Try to keep your email neutral and diplomatic, but keep expressing how the workplace is unsafe and is now allowing you to do your job. Get a doctor to state how the chemicals are causing you harm. If you can get another person at work who feels similarly you can escalate the issue. It s hard to fight bullying on your own. Perhaps even legal advice might becworthwhile

Sep 23, 2016 11:03 AM

Have you thought about going to the state labor board? Or maybe talking with an attorney, to see if they are legally affecting your rights? I know this has got to be overwhelming you, watching you go through it now well into a year+ (via posts). Hugs love & prayers this situation turns around to your benefit soon! 🙂💕🙏🌸

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