I am an employee at a large NYC public agency, where I have been so for 14 years.
On Monday, I was called into my Department Director's office. I was put at a table with two other supervisors. I was given a memo from him accusing me that I have made a false written statement concerning a grudge about another employee from another department, and using agency letterhead for a private matter.
The person identified in the letter that I am accused of making a statement about is someone who I had an email exchange with a couple of weeks ago where we had a dispute about a civil service matter. However, the email was not the subject of the memo I was given.
I asked the Director to give me a copy of the defamatory statement I had made. He said He cannot give it to me.
I asked the Director if he has a copy of it for himself. He said No, he does not have a copy.
I asked the Director if he has ever seen this alleged written statement I allegedly made. He said NO, he has never seen it.
So I said "How can you accuse me of anything if you cannot produce any evidence?" His answer is he thinks there may be a statement that was made that can link you to it." I said "How?" He said he can't specify.
At this point I said I have to have union representation. The Director said I cannot have representation in the meeting because the meeting is not disciplinary. I disagree of course.
I was asked to sign the memo. There was a line on the bottom for me to sign on with a line saying I have received the memo. I signed it because I know that not signing it can be construed as insubordination or at least an act of defiance. On the memo above my signature, I wrote that I have not received a copy of the aforementioned statement I allegedly made.
I was also told that if I did not sign it within 48 hours, there will be a disciplinary hearing.
So, is there any wrongdoing here on the part of the Director? Am I supposed to get a copy of what I am being accused of? Can I be accused of an be written up without any evidence?
If you think there's more to the whole workplace situation, there is. A couple of years ago I won a significant employment case against the agency for working at a much higher title level than what I have been employed at. It went on for several years until arbitration found in my favor. I recently have been requesting the agency to consider me from a civil service list I passed a test for which has a significantly higher compensation level, but they are not open to that apparently, mostly because of the out-of-title case history.
The union has indicated that management may have opened themselves to liability. They need to investigate further.
thanks for any replies.