terminated couple weeks ago, what to expect?

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by cornfed, Sep 2, 2012.

  1. cornfed

    cornfed New Member

    Alright, starting to just get impatient and nervous, so wanted some input. Thank you in advance.

    Almost 2 weeks ago i came in to work as usual and the division manager was at our center interviewing drivers...i went last with union steward waiting in office. Asked me about an incident from the previous week which i fessed up to. Basically i made a derogatory comment to another driver(guy) who had wronged me out of spite. They told me they were doing an investigation and i would not be working that day. So i clocked out, gave my diad to the rookie who was called in to work and went home. No work the next day. The following day was told to show up to work at 8am. Came in in browns, said they were terminating employment. Went home. Spoke with union steward later than night and teamster rep later in the week, set up a meeting for the following week. They had no other ammunition really against me, i apologized, took responsibility for my actions, promising this type of thing would NEVER happen again. The 2 suits, myself, and the teamster rep were in this meeting. Thought it went very well, we talked over many root issues which led to this altercation and all parties agreed things at our center need to change. After the meeting, the 2 managers left for 6 or 7 minutes, came back and said they were not prepared at this time to extend employment to me. Now, being with the company for only 5 years and a part of a small center never seeing anyone really get fired, i was devastated and in disbelief. As of now i am maintaining contact with the union rep and my local steward and have a date set for a "panel" meeting out of state on like the 19th or 20th of this month.

    I've read quite a few termination/fired threads on here before posting and have seen people asking why it's always the wife who comes on here, lol, it's because they, if like my wife, are freaking out ALOT more and are so much more emotional than I am. Very bumpy time in my marriage this is becoming.

    Any advice and/or further questions are welcome. Perhaps just general comments on what to expect going forward. BTW, i'm late 20's, married 7 years, 2 kids, been with UPS 5 years. I am unsure as to how many details i can reveal besides to my own family at this time.

    At first, they said they were doing an investigation into a claim of sexual harassment. Later, the termination reason was more about "unprofessional conduct" but was falling under the anti-harassment/anti-violence/unprofessional conduct policy or whatever.

    I'm sure this post sounded rambling in nature and i left things out, please start up a conversation, ask questions, whatever, i have nothing else to do right now.
  2. Dracula

    Dracula Package Car is cake compared to this...

    Hard to say much about your case, as your details are understandably vague. You said you made a derogatory comment to another driver. You should never admit guilt with this company, but there is no use in hammering you about that now; it's past that now. You've apologized, and right now, that is all you can hang your job on.

    I don't know what part of the country you are in, but in the Midwest, our panels are referred to as the Two-State hearings. I'm hope the panels you have are different from our panels, because ours are where jobs go to die. Ever since Hoffa was elected, the Two-State panels are to be avoided at all costs. They are ALWAYS slanted towards the company, and the union reps on those panels should gave been kicked out of the union long ago. They are a ******* disgrace to the Teamster name. And that blame lays directly at Hoffa's feet.

    Hopefully--and I really mean that--your panels are different.

    In our local, if you get terminated (suspended), you do everything you can to get back to work, even if it means eating ****** and losing 3, 4, 5, even 6 weeks of lost time. Because here, you avoid Two-State panels like the plague. Again, it's completely wrong, and our union dues should go down every time a good man/woman loses their job because someone on our side votes against them.

    About ten years ago, my management was coming after me and my job because I used to file grievances all of the time, and held their feet to the fire every chance I could. After a while, it made me miserable, because I was losing the grievances and I realized my local didn't have my back. I figured it was only a matter of time before a made a simple mistake on car, would be terminated and have my case sent to the Two-State panel. I worried about losing my job and all of the time I accumulated.

    But after I while, I started looking at it in a different way. I thought all of the things that kept me at UPS, also, were the same things that I hated about UPS. I started here when I was 18, and made myself a lifer in more ways than one. This job has provided me with a lot of good things over the years, but it has also made me pay a heavy price for those things. Slowly, I came to know, really KNOW, that things would be OK if I got fired. Not comfortable, certainly not in the near term, but I had good family and friends; I would have been alright. No, I wouldn't have made as much money for a while, maybe even ever, who knows? But you can bet your ass I would have had a huge burden lifted off my shoulders. This place can take a horrible toll on a person if you let it.

    So I saw my grievances weren't being won, and in fact, were only causing me grief, making me hot tempered at work towards my management team. So I stopped filing grievances, for the most part. And I stopped worrying about losing my job. I told myself, "If it happens, it happens. I will survive". It worked for me. I started to let things roll off my back. And slowly, things cooled down, and they kind of forgot about me. I was happier. Parts of me hated that UPS could violate our contract whenever they pleased, and for the most part, there was little I could do about it. But that was the situation our union was--is--in.

    I guess what I'm trying to say to you is this: you are still pretty young. No one NEEDS this job. And happiness isn't something you should look for here. Happiness is AFTER you clock out and go home. Yeah, in a tough economy, a good paying job with good benefits is something to have and hold, but it sure isn't the end all. There are boatloads of people who are in handsomely paid jobs and occupations that are completely miserable. I know plenty.

    Money doesn't make us happy; it only cushions us if we aren't already happy.

    I really hope you get your job back, but if for some reason you don't, keep your head up and find something that makes you happy, even you don't make as much money. In the long run, you should be better off.

    Good luck, brother.
    Lasted edited by : Sep 3, 2012
  3. 104Feeder

    104Feeder Phoenix Feeder

    Generally, except for our 7 "cardinal sins" you cannot be terminated without a warning letter in place for the same offense. Did you have one?

    The Company should have sent you a letter detailing the exact reason you were terminate for. If it was for "unprofessional conduct" that isn't a 'cardinal sin'. I hope you immediately filed a grievance for "Termination unjust and unwarranted", and I'm assuming you did since you have a panel hearing scheduled. In the West our panels aren't like what Dracula is describing but you have to remember that on both sides you have just regular lay people acting as Judge & Jury.

    It's highly unusual for someone not committing a 'cardinal sin' to be out on the street, is there more to the story? Sometimes I've seen people walked out and the Company knows it's going to be reversed at panel, but depending on the timing they can hurt you for 30-60 days & then give you your job back. Usually back pay is the wild card and the Union may urge you to give that up to settle & get you back to work now. I've seen people sit out for 2 years going to Arbitration in order to be reinstated with back pay, some got a big fat check and some didn't. It will be up to you to decide whether to take that road or not. Regardless I think you've learned a lot about how this Company really treats people.

    And Management wonders why we're so militant....
  4. rocket man

    rocket man Well-Known Member

    no matter what it wHAT you did or said I really hope you turned in a grivance. if you didnt and its with in 10 days you better have it in this tuesday morning and WHEN ARE YOU GONNA LEARN MANAGMENT IS NOT YOUR FRIENDS .
  5. toonertoo

    toonertoo Most Awesome Dog Staff Member

    Dracula. That above post ^^^^^^^is one of the best I have ever seen.
  6. Funfact

    Funfact Well-Known Member

    There more to this story. The OP's vague explanation would make me believe that the ""derogatory comments"" had to do about either (race, or sexual preference ).. Which is a BIG NO NO.... I would also seem that someone other than the other person heard them....

    Because if I call someone a A-hole or F--- A-hole I'm not saying I'm sorry later on....
  7. Dracula

    Dracula Package Car is cake compared to this...

    He's smart not to give too many details here. We have plenty of management peeps here. It's not a stretch to think that could possibly get passed on to his managers if he was too specific. He hasn't got his job back. Of course there is more to this story.
  8. Sleeve_meet_Heart

    Sleeve_meet_Heart making the unreadable unreadabler

    Workplace violence = zero tolerance. No notice, paper trail, previous discipline necessary, imo.
  9. BigUnionGuy

    BigUnionGuy Got the T-Shirt

    The force will be with you.

    Seriously, if you are from a small center.... they are probably just making you sweat, to set an example.

  10. Bubblehead

    Bubblehead My Senior Picture

    I wonder if the OP has employment insurance?
    Wake up people, the union is pretty good at protecting our jobs.
    What the union can't protect us from is the monetary loss associated with the time it takes to negotiate the grievance process.
    Back pay is a myth, employment insurance is real.
    I can help, but only before you are fired.
    Don't think it won't happen to you.
    PM me.
  11. dragracer66

    dragracer66 Active Member

    Sad to say. But zero tolerance is zero tolerance. Sounds like they are making you the example....
  12. cornfed

    cornfed New Member

    Thanks for all of the responses. I did indeed file a grievance the day after termination. There definitely are more details to the story, nothing too dramatic except for the insult itself was indeed overheard by at least one other person. What i said was a somewhat perverted metaphor about the employee and why he and another guy get exactly what they want and why i get s*** on every day. Again, i'm not sure how much detail i should/can share at this point. I can tell you that after now knowing and seeing all of the interview material, etc, if this were a court of law, it would easily be a mistrial by now because there are so many distortions going on and lying about the physical assault that took place right before this comment i made. Magically, nobody saw that, only heard what i said.

    I never received a warning letter about ANYTHING except clocking in 3 minutes before my 10 hours off once which was of course a DOT violation. 2 years ago or so.

    Termination letter i received about 4 days after termination says "persuant to article 17(i) of our current labor agreement, "other serious offenses", you are hereby notified"....blah blah blah...."The reason for your termination is non-compliance with the Professional Conduct and Anti-Harassment Policy."

    I will say that the employee i made the comment to says the comment did not offend him and he certainly did not take the metaphor literally and thought it was ridiculous i would be terminated for such a thing. He says we get along great and that day we both lost our cools. He however did lie about putting his hands on me.
  13. cornfed

    cornfed New Member

    btw, what would you guys consider the line drawn between the "west" and "midwest"? lol.
  14. cornfed

    cornfed New Member

    Well....the problem is management(at least dispatch) is with some, and couldn't give two craps about anyone else. We have drivers like me who only see their kids on the weekends and other drivers who are cracking a beer at 445.
  15. cornfed

    cornfed New Member

    I might also add I still have my key to the building, my ups id and have been returning to the building to get paychecks. Perhaps that means nothing, I don't know.
  16. BigUnionGuy

    BigUnionGuy Got the T-Shirt

    Tell the rest of the story.

  17. barnyard

    barnyard KTM rider Staff Member

    I am in the midwest also. We have had a couple of guys go to panel. Both in Chicago and both got their jobs back before appearing at panel. One as they were walking into the room the other 2 days before. The problem the OP has is obviously not with the other person in the conversation, it is with the person that overheard it.

    If what you said could be construed as sexual harassment, you might be done. It is really hard to say, though. Your union rep should be able to give you an idea of what to expect.
  18. Funfact

    Funfact Well-Known Member

    Someone else heard you say something not nice to the other employee that should have been said in the work place. As I said it had to have racial or sexual overtones. Now you add that someone touch the other person.

    The story is slowly starting to come together and it's not looking good on you end...
  19. bbsam

    bbsam Moderator Staff Member

    First, I truly do hope things work out well for you. Second, if they don't, I too am in the midwest and would relish the opportunity to make you a job offer. Wouldn't be UPS money, but probably much higher than any horror stories you might have heard.
  20. Dracula

    Dracula Package Car is cake compared to this...

    Hey. I'm glad for you other guys/gals if your panels are better than ours. That is how it should be. Here, they are death for suspension cases. Every one in this area, who pays attention, KNOWS that you avoid Two-State at all costs. Simply put, you will lose there. Someone asked what is the dividing line between west and midwest. I would answer, between me and you. Hell, I don't want to take my own advice to brown_guy, I'm too close to retirement.

    To all you people out there wondering about whether or not to go to feeders, here is one definite advantage. I know of at least three guys who lost there jobs at Two-State for accidents, and because they had a CDL, they got other jobs driving big trucks. At UPS pay? Of course not. But they are also not in the pressure cooker like we are, either.

    The big lesson here, I think, falls back on the old, "Follow the methods", "Follow instructions, then file your grievances after the fact", and for Christ's sake, DO NOT GET IN A HURRY!! That only benefits them, not you, not matter how much you think it makes your job easier. brown_guy, you said you kind of blew you stack with this other driver. That is the bigger lesson here. Don't let this company's horse-:censored2: get in between your clock-in, and your clock-out. Even it you feel it, let it GO!