Tuesday, November 6, 2012

City employees penalized for absence

From the Daily News:

Thousands of city employees who’ve been docked vacation time during the past week say the city should give them a break.

“It was very upsetting because we felt that everything that happened was out of our control. The storm was an act of nature,” said a hospital worker who said she couldn’t get from her home in the Bronx to Queens for her job.

Mayor Bloomberg ordered all city employees to report to work throughout the week – despite devastation from a hurricane and the challenge of commuting without buses or subways.

That’s proved next to impossible for some, who will lose vacation days as a result.

From the Huffington Post:

Their options were quite simple. Ride a bike through a hurricane (yes, there were 75 mile-per-hour winds and pouring rain), walk to work (because three hours in the pouring rain is a safe bet), or hitchhike. Any idiot needed only to look out of his window to realize how ridiculous a task this was - not to mention how unsafe any of the available options were.

Just as Mayor Bloomberg, Governor Cuomo, and the Office of Emergency Management were advising people to stay off the streets, avoid transportation, and be cautious, they were sending their own employees to work. Talk about double standards.

What was the penalty for choosing to avoid putting oneself in harm's way by walking to work during a hurricane?

Employees were told that their absence would be counted as personal leave days. I read this as: "You'd better show up to work, and if you don't, we'll mark you absent." An entire city is shut down because of a storm that the Mayor himself describes as one of the worst in the city's history, and employees are penalized for not putting themselves in danger. This is an outrage.

To redress this, Mayor Bloomberg must take three steps.

First, he ought to issue a formal apology to all City employees who were unnecessarily forced either go to work, or use their personal leave days, on Monday and Tuesday. Second, he ought to compensate those who did attend work by paying them for overtime. Finally, he should return the personal leave days to those who chose to stay at home.


Jerry Rotondi said...

You should grant these workers amnesty, you nasty nanny of a mayor!

Anonymous said...

Maybe Bloomberg should be penalized or penis-ized!

Anonymous said...

Too bad, quite!

Anonymous said...

another example of the Mayor lacking the common touch. He still doesn't understand you can't have police working 12 hour shifts for a week and then work a marathon while people are still in dire straits. He didn't cancel the marathon because it was the right decision but only because it was a distraction.
You can't have your employees risk being killed in a storm because city offices are "still open for business" or get docked.
And he thinks riding the subway with an army of security personnel shows his common touch.

Layla said...

There are many courageous city workers who did report throughout the storm because they provide essential services. I know of 311 operators who had to stand outside in the storm and wait for prison buses to pick them up and transport them to work so they could take calls about fallen trees, flooding, and other "non-emergency" issues. They did this not just because they were required to, but also because it is what they signed up for when they took the positions. No one should be penalized for the days of the storm. Only, perhaps, the days when public transport started up again. And believe me, on the day of the storm, there was no nice language about getting to work if you can do so safely. It was basically, get to work or a evac shelter or you lose vacation days.

Rick said...

Some workers in the City University of New York (CUNY) must come to work or they get docked. No, they don't lose vacation days, they get DOCKED.

These are the trades, cleaners and security officers that are considered to be essential workers.

Anonymous said...

Same thing happened with Hurricane GLoria then got rescinded

Anonymous said...

911 city workers were docked Cash from their paychecks not time. Time would of been alot more reasonable than hard earned cash. I guess Mayor Bloomberg is not only a person who lacks consideration for his hard working city employees but he is also a liar. He tells the public time will be taken from city employees paychecks and then instead robs them of their hard earned cash.