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Unfiltered Story #243935

, | Unfiltered | September 15, 2021

I work as an IT technician. About two years ago my boss decided to hire a new technician to replace one who had left. The woman we hired (let’s call her “C”) got off to a good start and seemed to fit in well. One of my colleagues, who we’ll call “L”, had ben asked to train her, and he did so. I should say at this point that “L” is one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet. He’s always willing to help anyone who needs help, he’s friendly, polite and kind.

About a month after she started, C came into our office, and overheard “L” talking to us about his weekend. She walked in just as he was talking about having been to church. When she heard this, C got really annoyed “CHURCH???” she said, “Don’t tell me you’re one of those **** CHRISTIANS???” she demanded. L said that yes, he was a Christian. This seemed to really irk C, who stormed out of the room. L was really concerned. (By the way, we all knew L was a Christian and it never bothered us because he had never been nasty or judgemental, just really warm, friendly and kind.

A few days later, L gets called to HR for a “chat”. It turns out C made a complaint about him, accusing him of calling her a (lesbian slur), which L denied. We backed him up during the investigation, mainly because it was so out of character for L to ever do such a thing. (Also, he apparently didn’t even know she was gay as she never talked to him much about her private life.) HR concluded that since nobody in our team had actually WITNESSED the incident there was very little they could do. They told L that if he ever did give C a hard time about her sexuality there would be consequences.

Well, L returned to work (he’d been suspended during the investigation) but things were not exactly harmonious. C stopped talking to him, and would ignore him if he talked to her. She’d assign him extra helpdesk tickets (more than he could cope with) and complain about him “not pulling his weight”. He put up with this for about 3 weeks (longer than I would have!) before going to talk to our boss about it.

Our boss asked C what was going on and she simply denied everything, instead calling our office a “hostile working environment” and demanding that L be moved to another department. Boss asked L if he’d mind moving to another department, but L declined (obviously!) C then DEMANDED that L be moved and told our boss “not to give him a choice”. Our boss asked C if SHE wanted to move to another department, and apparently she screamed (yes, screamed) that “SHE SHOULDN’T HAVE TO MOVE TO ANOTHER DEPARTMENT BECAUSE SHE WAS HIRED AS AN IT TECHNICIAN”.

At this point our boss was fed up with dealing with her. He referred the matter to HR who sat down with L and C for “mediation”. As L told me later, HR asked him “Did he have any problem working with L, based on her sexual orientation?” L replied that he didn’t. C was asked what her issue was with L. She explained that she “shouldn’t have to work with him because he is THE ENEMY.” HR told her that she’d either have to learn to work with him or find another job.

C took this to mean that she was being fired and said “You can’t f**** fire me, I’ll take the lot of you to court!” HR told her that they weren’t firing her, simply pointing out that she would need to learn to work with L, as her direct colleague.

Six months after C started working for us, L quit. He’d had enough. He phoned our boss one morning in tears and said he couldn’t cope anymore. He said he had relapsed into clinical depression. He never came back. A month later, C left. She said we’d all become hostile towards her when “she’d been nothing but civil to us”. We were just angry that she’d driven away one of the nicest people we’d ever worked with, a man who was not only our best IT technician, but also one of our closest friends.

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