Someone This Oblivious Could Probably Use Their Own Supervision

, , , , | Working | June 26, 2020

My child has a severe developmental disorder requiring twenty-four-hour supervision. It’s very difficult to find workers able to meet their needs, mostly for playful interaction and adult supervision rather than anything heavy or medical. 

My kid loves the support worker we finally hire. She’s playful when she’s here, but she pulls stunts like not showing up, giving three minutes of notice, being late, and even showing up on off days saying, “I wanted the hours so I’ll work now,” as we’re headed out of the house. She’s on her phone constantly. She adds hours to her invoices, believing that if she was scheduled to work and never shows up she should be paid, and if she’s “bored” and walks out early, she should also be paid to the shift end. She’s definitely not the brightest bulb in the box.

The day comes when I’m ready to fire her, which is hard because my child loves her for some reason. The conversation doesn’t quite go as planned! 

Me: “[Worker], we need to talk about you not showing up for work.”

Worker: “You’re right!” *Enthusiastically* “I’ve been thinking about it, and I think I should have a raise!”

Me: “Why would you ask for a raise? I’m paying you a competitive hourly wage, well above the minimum. Besides, I know this might be diffi—”

I’m preparing to drop the axe, but she cuts me off.

Worker: “And I moved. Now it takes me longer to get to work—” *it doesn’t* “—so you owe me two dollars per hour more. That’s how it works. All employers have to pay employees to get to work. So, now I make [amount] an hour for twenty hours a week.” 

She confidently quotes an amount nearly ten dollars an hour over the “going” wage, and twenty hours a week when she now barely shows up for three hours a week. 

Worker: “It’s the law!”

She was gobsmacked when I fired her! Sadly, she recently got a job working full time with developmentally disabled adults at a local activity centre. Other parents tell me she’s known as “the one with the phone,” but the centre won’t fire her.

When they called me for a reference — yes, she thought I’d give her a good reference — I told it straight and the supervisor thanked me, saying with a sigh, “Well, at least she hasn’t killed anybody yet. It’s the best we can hope for, I guess.”

Sigh.

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