Friday, July 23, 2010

Only 163 more days until maternity leave (or less)

I cannot stand by job.  I like what I do but not who I do it for.  I've been with this department for a little over a year and a half (have been dispatching for over 4 years) and have been burnt out basically since I got there.  With it being a governmental agency there are so many rules and chain of command and a whole lot of nonsense.  Our actual office is inside the county jail and they're currently remodeling.  Today there was a very strong paint odor and one of my coworkers said I needed to ask what kind and make sure it was ok for baby.  From everything I've read, latex paint is fine; oil based and obviously lead are not.  We asked and surprise surprise they were using oil based.  I had already been there for 6 hours when we found out and was starting to get a bad headache and lightheaded so I told my supervisor I needed to know if I would be penalized for leaving what was a hazardous working environment... she calls her supervisor (remember chain of command) who says I can go home but have to use sick leave!  I called HR and they said that in a "normal" position you would not have to use personal time to leave a hazardous work environment and the employeer would have to pay you because you were not leavin by choice but since we are a governmental agency under an elected official the rules didn't apply.  This was when I started crying.  I didn't want to do anything to hurt the baby but I didn't want to have to use all my time off in case I need it later in pregnancy!  After my boss saw my reaction she went to the assistant cheif (3rd from the top) who told her the same thing... evidently he talked to the Sheriff (#1) afterwards and called her back saying that I was to go home for 2 days until the painting was done and the ventilation returned.  I have yet to find out if I have to use sick leave or not but I was so ready to leave I grabbed my stuff and ran.

I've been having some dull cramping tonight but I'm hoping it's just round ligament or nerves.  Please baby be okay.  I did read that most of the problems from paint or other toxins mainly only happen during the first trimester but if it was bad enough to make me feel sick what would it do to the baby?!  Of course I think of the worse case.  I hope I'm wrong and everything with baby (and me) is ok.

I am NOT going to be working there after baby comes and have thought about leaving sooner but the insurance there is really good and the longer I work there (it's good money) the more we can save and the longer I can stay at home full time after baby without having to get a part time job.  If it comes to the point where it causes too much stress or anything else I will be leaving.

Thanks for listening to my rant!

1 comment:

  1. I can totally understand how you are feeling. EMS is just a whole lot of political BS. The work can be great but then dealing with all the surrounding rubbish from their imposed ideas, policies, conditions etc. make it hard. For people who are supposed to be in the business of helping other people, they do little to ensure the satisfation of their emloyees and I think it speaks volumes about folks like us that stick it out despite how poorly we get treated.

    I am sorry to hear that you had to go through all of that and disappointed that a little common sense from your employer didn't happen and it all had to be routed through so many people just so you can be safe. *shakes head* I hope everything is ok with bub. You are in the safe zone now so there shouldn't be too much reason to worry about adverse effects but it can be very unsettling when things feel a bit off.

    Keep us up to date. xxxx