Friday, October 13, 2006

Yuhl-Sheem (11)

I only worked at the hotel for a few months. I was fired because I wouldn’t work on Sundays. On my application I wrote that I could not work Sundays because of church. Also, at my interview I said I couldn’t work Sundays. After they hired me they would post my schedule every week and schedule me to work Sundays. All the other ladies at least had one Sunday off. I was scheduled for every single Sunday. I went to Robert, one of the managers, and asked him for Sunday off. He said, “The hotel business is 24 hours a day 7 days a week; I can’t do anything to help you.” Sometimes when I couldn't find Robert, I would tell my supervisors, Carlos and Rudolph, that I couldn't come to work on Sunday. They would tell me that it was fine.

My shoulders and my back kept hurting so I finally went to the doctor. I got shots but I still had a lot of pain. I had to schedule an MRI. The Thursday before my appointment I told Robert that I had a doctor’s appointment for the next day. He said, “What? What? Speak up!” So I got closer and said it louder. I also asked him again to switch my Sunday schedule. He was upset and made me follow him to the Human Resources department. He was looking for Michael, the head of the HR department. The secretary told Robert that Michael wasn’t in and she asked what the problem was. He yelled and said, “This woman doesn’t want to work on Sundays!” The secretary looked at me and said the same thing that Ron had told me about the hotel business being 7 days a week.

I said, “I know. I know, but when I interviewed with Robert I said, ‘ No work Sunday.’” I said to her, “Please, please, I go to church on Sundays.” The secretary’s eyes got really big and she said in a nasty voice, “Go to church Sunday morning and come to work in the afternoon! Or tell your pastor that you can’t come to church because you work!” Her eyes were so big and angry. I thought she was going to grab me and tear me up. If I could speak English well I would have said, “Hey! Who are you to talk to me like this?” That’s what I wanted to say but I couldn’t say it in English. I felt so bad inside that I wanted to cry. But I kept it held inside of me. I did not cry. They told me to wait and they went inside the HR office. They talked for 20 minutes or so and came out and just told me to go home.

On Friday I didn’t go to work because of my doctor’s appointment. The following Saturday when I went to work in the morning Robert called me into his office and asked me again, “Why didn’t you come to work yesterday?” I said, “I told you that I had a doctor’s appointment. I told you yesterday.” He said, “Well if your arm hurts so much why don’t you go find another job? You don’t even want to work on Sundays. Why don’t you find another job?” He was trying to get me to quit. I told him, “No. I like it here.”

Then the woman who writes out our schedule asked Robert how many rooms she should put me down for. Robert whispered something in her ear. She looked at me like she was sorry and put me down for only six rooms. He was cutting my work time short. He stood there for a while. He finally said, “Look, I like you. The other women like you and you work hard but I have to take the side of the hotel. You have to work on Sundays.” We went back and forth for a little bit more and he finally told me to go start my rooms. After I finished my six rooms I had nothing to do. I was hired fulltime though so I went downstairs to the laundry room and helped them for the rest of my day.

On Monday I went into work and looked at my schedule. I had no rooms assigned to me. My supervisor Carlos said to me softly, “Song, come wait here (meaning in front of Robert’s office).” Carlos looked sad. Robert called Carlos in and they talked for a while. Carlos came back out and told me that Robert wanted me to wait longer. I waited for 20 minutes. I was so mad. I came to work that day and Robert had no reason to be so mean to me. He thinks because he’s the manager he can do whatever he wants, treat people however he wants. I finally just walked into his office and said, “Should I work in the laundry today?” Robert told me, “No. No more work for you. You don’t want to work on Sundays. You say you're sick. You can’t work here anymore.” I said to him, “I don’t speak that much English. Please talk to my husband about Sundays.” Robert told me he had talked to my husband several times but they had not agreed. Robert told me that he and Michael in Human Resources had already decided not to give me any more work. He said to bring my husband to the hotel on Friday if he had any questions. I told him, “No, I still want to work. I don’t want to go.” He said, “No. You’re done.” I stood there for a bit and finally said, “Are you sure?” He was quiet. I said it again, “Are you sure?” After a few seconds he said, “Go home.”

Before I went home I looked at my name on the schedule. Robert had written that I had not called in to say I wouldn’t be in on Sunday. I told him twice that week that I wouldn’t come in on Sunday. My husband also called him and left him a message on his cell phone. He wrote a lie on my schedule. He was covering up for himself. It was done.

Before I left, Carlos looked at me and shook his head in dismay and said, “I'm so sorry. It wasn’t right what Robert did.” The other women were upset too and hugged me before I left.

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