|Home health care job client bed bugs infested my own home|
I can’t really say whether if refusing to continue servicing this one client, would be considered misconduct by your state unemployment insurance agency, should your employer fire you over this.
I do know that if this had happened to me, as a result of doing my job, I would of been documenting the problem from the first moment I noticed a bed bug in the clients home and would likely still be communicating this way with the employer as an effort to resolve the problem of the cost of exterminating the bed bugs, while raising my concerns about any future re-infestation if the employer didn’t come up with a better solution than telling me to STRIP first, before entering my own home to avoid spreading bed bugs there again.
The reason being, is I know refusing to go back to this client’s, or any other future client’s home infested with bed bugs would raise my concern refusal could be argued to be insubordination (or refusal to follow a REASONABLE directive from an employer), not to mention that the way I see things from here, following the employer’s solution, presents the possibility I could be the cause of infecting another innocent client’s home on any given day I didn’t strip before entering their home, after leaving the bedbug clients home, that cost me $1500 of the money I earned doing my job.
Did you ask your employer to pay the extermination bill? Did they?
Quitting requires proof of good cause, generally proof proves quitting as attributable to the work, or the employer. This doesn’t mean an employer can’t, or won’t fire you, for even a reasonable refusal, which ends up being sufficient to meet their burden of misconduct, if you can’t prove it was the employer not following good sense to help resolve and control this type of work related problem.
Either way, you need documentation, your refusal was reasonable and it was the employer not being reasonable with whatever their solution to this nasty problem might have been.
$1500 for bedbug extermination is not an incidental additional cost to maintain an at-will working relationship.
So any basic advice now, as usual, is to keep the focus on those things that shift the fault for quitting to the employer, even if they choose to fire you for refusing to go back, so you can also show your actions (choices) were reasonable and not rising to something deemed to be misconduct.
Since you’re still an employee, I might also suggest you learn if there might be any state regulation relating to what a home health care agency must do, should a situation like this arise with a client.
I’m sure you can’t be the first, or last who this has happened to, or that it might not again become a concern for you personally in the future with another client.
To put your unemployment benefit problem in a nutshell if it were me, I’d focus on resolving this problem reasonably with the employer (documenting all communications regarding the situation, I mean email exchanges) I’d find some ammunition, by knowing what, if any, rule, or regulation might be applicable to this situation that is mandated by a regulation to be the responsibility of the ER home health care agency as it might give me some leverage while trying to adequately resolve this problem before I refuse to go back to this one clients home.
It’s better than the approach to argue it’s personal anxiousness, or nightmares causing any decision to refuse to go back to this client’s home, although I do get why you are feeling those things, as my skin is crawling as I type right now!!