Firstly thanks to the woman for sharing her story (name withheld by request) and allowing me to share this victory; justice is served and rightly so. Too many times we get unresolved issues left to rot.
According to the woman in a telephone interview after reading one of my previous posts on a bus conductress matter she rang me up on the number listed and left a message. She said she was accused initially by another woman for an inappropriate pass in the ladies lavatory then repeated passes in verbal exchanges with the woman as well; allegations which were not true, the lesbophobic co-worker then went on a smear campaign at the call centre over time so much so that she was shunned as one with leprosy literally as persons would even withdraw from her when she the victim enters a space or the lunch room area. An early report was made to her immediate supervisor as the company tends to promote cordial relations between employees but it turned out that the matter when it got to the human resources department took a whole different feel and tone by the HR manager.
After several meetings with either woman separately and then together alongside eyewitnesses in one session who mysteriously popped up claiming they suspected the impacted woman to be a lesbian as she stays away from the other male workers and does not really socialise with them. An earlier staff trip was referenced and to the shock of the bisexual woman she was only learning she was being so observed and was a talking point some five or so months after the fact. The lesbophobic co-worker continued her smear campaign over time if ever so slowly and deleteriously so much so that even after a transfer to another shift request was honoured she impacted woman she came into the same stares, snickers and withdrawals if not refusal to engage when she enters a space or a room or at least sometimes very cold interactions.
Things came to a head when the impacted woman was forced to make a report to the HR manager after a man related some other things that were being said of her by the lesbophobic woman during which time the impacted woman also requested a review of camera footage of all access areas at the premises nearing the lavatory; the request was responded to positively but took an inordinate amount of time to review with interim engagements with the HR manager kept dithering and saying it will take time; as the impacted woman continued her somewhat shaky existence at work and some persons warmed up to her over time maybe realizing the accusations and smear campaign were erroneous and deceptive.
The impacted woman was eventually relieved of her job as a temporary measure as tensions heat up but the hateful co-worker did not feel the same action at her bearing in mind it is two persons involved here. She was only paid a flat rate as her earning power based on commissions and she went above the head of the HR manager in writing as she was advised so to do. The Region Manager eventually got involved and called for a series of meetings late last year and also insisted on the review of the camera footage at the time stated in the earlier written report at the time specified by the deceptive co-worker. Upon review of the footage no untoward movements were observed outside the door that suggested inappropriate actions on anyone’s part neither was there any moment when both women or that of any women were in the company of the accused to suggest familiarity or homosexual activity.
The impacted woman also said the only discussion they had about any lesbian matters was one way back where it was the now dismissed woman who raised the issue to which the reinstated woman responded neutrally according to her.
The deceptive co-worker was put on probation with a one remaining strike out warning of which she broke as she was late a few times after which the HR took action and dismissed her in December as well. Since her departure she has been blaming the impacted but reinstated woman for her job loss but the reinstated woman is not taking any chances as she plans her movements and tries to get any hint if she fired woman is trying or saying to other employees. I encouraged her to also keep a line open with the HR and more so the Region Manager as well just in case, as we say peace and safety can also have sudden destruction. This one just goes to show some organizations are forward thinking and at least are not interested in people’s sex lives but the quality of work and staff welfare.
Payback is a b**** indeed they say.
Peace & tolerance