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Scooby72  
#1 Posted : Saturday, October 01, 2011 2:36:29 PM(UTC)
Scooby72

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Hi all - just wanted to bounce my scenario off some of you and get some feedback.  I am kind of stuck and unsure what to do.


 


I am disabled - Meniere's disease (chronic vertigo, etc.).  I
was diagnosed several years ago but it was rather dormant for years, within the
past 1.5 years I have had episodes of vertigo last from several hours to a
couple of weeks.  I have a ton of medical documentation, and the
statements "unable to perform basic life activity"; such as walking, anything requiring balance and dexterity.  


 


Last August, my service (I work for the VA) issued me a laptop and
I was allowed to telework on days that I was experiencing vertigo and taking
meds (valium, meclizine, etc), this ended up being 1 - 2 days a week.  In
addition, we've had several projects that have been going on so I had also be
doing a lot of comp time.  This August, I was told that I could no longer
telework when ill - that I had to take sick time.  If I was allowed to
telework it was only if I had pre-approval and I had to do detailed logs of
what I was working on.  This is not required by any other employee in my service that works from home - no pre approval, no logs.


 


At the end of August I applied for a request for accommodation,
which the board approved but my service director said that a better option with
be "reassignment" to another position that I would no longer allowed
to telecommute.  He told me that the work relationship "wasn't
working" and I needed to move on.  I asked why and he said my performance was an issue.


 


My last performance review was in January 2011 and was good,
however they did mention that I had a disability and performed best when in the
office, but average when working from home.  I requested are evaluation
three months later, which never happened.  The day after my meeting above,
I emailed my three supervisors and requested specific incidents and issues so that I could improve - they still have not responded.  


 


At this point, I have been very ill - I have burned through all my
AL, SL, and around 300 hours of CT being sick.  I have applied for SSDI
and for Fers Disability.  As far as the reassignment, I'm being told that
there is nothing out there and basically once my FMLA is used up I will be terminated.


 


I haven't used my FMLA yet and I have no STD policy.  So now, if I'm not working, I'm not getting paid.


 


I've contacted the union and filed a complaint with EEO.  Their
biggest concerns are why they allowed me to work from home when I was sick then
took it away, as well as performance issues that no one has spoken to me.
 I am hoping that they will mediate and I will be able to telecommute and
work as I can until the disability kicks in or I come up with another full/part time telecommuting position.


 


Here are my options - 


 


A - Hope EEO can mediate so I can work and keep benefits, and still do my job.


B - Take my FMLA and keep my job but zero pay and no benefits.


C - Once my FMLA is used up, I'll be terminated (but still apparently eligible for FERS disability).


 


I've considered contacting an attorney, but yet again I don't have
4 - 5k for a retainer, and I don't want this to be a big case - I'd just like
to keep my job until my disability is approved. Which could take time, but I can do my job.


 


Oh, and I'm also a US Navy veteran.


 


Opinions?  Suggestions?

pilgrim  
#2 Posted : Sunday, November 13, 2011 2:08:50 PM(UTC)
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Go on the i-net, read about one of the Cain (presidential candidate) accuser's background.  There is one woman who filed an EEO way in the past, for not being allowed to work at home following an accident.  Then try to go to EEO internet files, and see how that case proceeded and was settled.  I believe it was the SECOND woman who accused Cain, the one who is a government spokesperson for Treasury, who filed the EEO for not being allowed to work at home..........
pilgrim  
#3 Posted : Sunday, November 13, 2011 2:11:05 PM(UTC)
pilgrim

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Scoob, you DO have one problem, and that is dealing with your agency's finding that you're doing WORSE working from home.  Either it's true due to your meds, or their B.S.'n and you need to refute that.... along with checking out the EEO.
RetirednHappy  
#4 Posted : Monday, November 14, 2011 3:22:52 AM(UTC)
RetirednHappy

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Sounds like your employer tried to allow part-time work from home for about a year, but found your performance deteriorating (as documented in your January 2011 performance plan). If you can no longer work at the office, on a consistent basis, you should apply for a disability retirement, due to a medical inability to perform the duties of your job. If management can substantiate the lack of performance issue, that is not discrimination. Good luck.
Scooby72  
#5 Posted : Monday, April 02, 2012 11:37:50 AM(UTC)
Scooby72

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Posts: 3


RetirednHappy wrote:
Sounds like your employer tried to allow part-time work from home for about a year, but found your performance deteriorating (as documented in your January 2011 performance plan). If you can no longer work at the office, on a consistent basis, you should apply for a disability retirement, due to a medical inability to perform the duties of your job. If management can substantiate the lack of performance issue, that is not discrimination. Good luck.

I was never on a performance plan and never been told I was doing anything excellent feedback - in fact I was recognized by ORO regarding what an outstanding job I had done for an audit.  Them playing the bad performance card is bull*****.

I applied for disability in August, the VA finally submitted it to OPM in March.
datbehard  
#6 Posted : Wednesday, July 04, 2012 6:05:35 AM(UTC)
datbehard

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Scoob,
Did you ever file the EEO?
 
You don't need an attorney for that. 
ms22divine  
#7 Posted : Friday, August 03, 2012 10:21:43 AM(UTC)
ms22divine

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To All Federal Employees,

On July 30, 2012,I won my Ninth Circuit Court Appeal's case in Mary Bullock v Jaqculine Berrien wherein federal employees have greater due process rights and do not have to jump through so many hoops to get into federal court. The issue was whether Judge Bullock had exhausted her administrative rights to proceed to District Court. Although, the Opinion stated the U.S. Attorney's Office knew Judge Bullock had exhausted her remedies the U.S. Attorney's Office argued it anyway. This is the standard argument as to why so many federal cases are dismissed from federal court.

Judge Bullock is a disabled judge with the EEOC who first asked for accommodations in 1999. When the Commission refused to allow her accommodations she sued them in 2003. The contract judge found a hostile work environment and retaliation. Judge Bullock did not win on her disability claim because the judge used an erroneous interpretation of the law as to when a disabled person is to be qualified as such. The time to determine whether someone is a "qualified individual with a disability" under the definition of the EEOC is when they request accommodations not almost many years later in the middle of a hearing in 2006. Judge Bullock has Multiple Sclerosis, systemic lupus and is now legally blind. The EEOC was aware of the fact that she had MS and systemic lupus when they hired her. Their failure to provide accommodations rendered her legally blind and made her relapsing and remitting MS progressive to terminal. The Ninth Circuit reversed the district court's ruling and remanded it back to the District Court for trial.

To all of you who arre suffering from disability discrimination my heart goes out to you and I can honestly say this battle took almost ten years of my life. At the very least, I can say my enormous struggle changed the law for all federal employees disabled or not.

Best Wishes!

Honorable Mary Elizabeth Bullock (Retired)
ms22divine  
#8 Posted : Friday, August 03, 2012 10:24:36 AM(UTC)
ms22divine

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OOPS! Sorry for my typos - but I really am blind and wanted to get this out!

Mary Elizabeth Bullock
lorsteluc  
#9 Posted : Friday, August 03, 2012 11:58:17 PM(UTC)
lorsteluc

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Dear Judge Bullock, you are a courageous, wonderful woman and I applaud you for your perserverence and dedication to justice.  I realize this fight has taken a toll on your health and I am sorry for that.  I find it unacceptable that the US Attorneys expend millions ofdollars to fight our right as federal employees to our Civil Rights but as federal employees, it has been shown time and time again that we are second class citizens by virtue that we can be discriminated, bullied and mentally tortured by federal supervisors and managers and the Justice Department will defend those supervisors and managers.  As a result, we are not equal with regard to our constitutional rights.  I do not recall giving up my civil rights to be a loyal federal employee!  It is obvious from your fight for justice that the EEOC process, as it stands now, is justice for private citizens and as federal employees, it takes someone like you, who for ten years, did not give up.  Thank you!!!
datbehard  
#10 Posted : Sunday, August 05, 2012 2:41:28 AM(UTC)
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Scoob,
 
You need to get a Doctor to write up a narrative that says your Meniere's disease is causally related and/or aggravated by your work at the VA. Stress is a major contributor to Meniere's attacks and it seems this situation is doing just that. Find a good OWCP doctor and file a CA-2 that you can fill out on-line. The date for you finding out it was work related was when the Doctor told you in his note to excuse you for work.
Example: In my medical opinion I believe scoobs menieres Disease and subsequent attacks are causally related to and aggravated by his Meniere's Disease and susequent attacks.
Dr. X
Aug. 5, 2012
 
You put your injury date down as Aug. 5, 2012 as that is the date the Dr. wrote the one line (or more) medical opinion that your job contributes to your disease.
Give or send (delivery confirmation) CA-2, along with Dr. note to immediate supervisor (keep copies)!
 
They will send it to injury comp who will forward to Workers Comp. who will open case file and deny your case, but then ask you ten or so questions. You fill these out (on seperate attached paper as needed.).  You take back to your doctor the OWCP case #, letter of denial, new Questions and your answers and he now writes up a detailed narrative of how you may have contacted Meniere's from your job and how the job itself is causing you to have attacks, etc......all the more, the better.
 
Don't have doctor use words like "I think", I believe" "might", "Maybe", etc......
 
Doc. needs just this!!!: "It Is My Medical Opinion that scoobs condition is aggravated by etc..........................................."
Send back Q7A and Dr. Narrative to OWCP with claim number at top of a cover page.
Send Del. Con. with number on cover page. Any questions, don't hesitate to act!
datbehard  
#11 Posted : Sunday, August 05, 2012 2:43:48 AM(UTC)
datbehard

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Posts: 431

Also,
this video will help you understand much of your rights that your Agency doesn't want you to know:
 
LILD  
#12 Posted : Wednesday, August 15, 2012 12:26:49 AM(UTC)
LILD

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Thanks for posting this result it is inspiring as i am awating a decision from the ofo for the same type of caseTongue
Appellant  
#13 Posted : Wednesday, October 24, 2012 7:52:13 AM(UTC)
Appellant

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Posts: 8

What about Voluntary Leave Transfer Program?Wink

castello  
#14 Posted : Friday, February 28, 2014 4:23:28 AM(UTC)
castello

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Posts: 16

once the agency allowed you to work from home they gave you an accomadation for your illness. once you get an RA they can't take it away that creates rounds fopr a discrimination complaint.I'd filed a caomplaint and resolve it throught the EEO process
Duke78  
#15 Posted : Saturday, March 01, 2014 5:17:16 AM(UTC)
Duke78

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Posts: 66

Any update on this? (Hope the original poster, got some good news.. )

I know the VA is getting tougher on allowing telecommuting. Too many people are not being honest in the hours they work..

I also have telecommuting access due to my disability..( Schedule-A) But it's not my department with the "issue," I think it's HR..

I have not been in a situation where I have been told to stop , or transfer etc..

IF it ever gets to that point, I already know what my plan is.

CBP-MidWest<br />11/6/13 - PASSED<br />2/24/14-FT1 PASSED<br />3/3/14-VBT & SI -PASSED<br /><br />
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