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State Employer violating FMLA California

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  • State Employer violating FMLA California

    I have a question for those who are smarter than myself in this area.

    I have a partner who has had his FMLA rights violated outright by the California Dept of Corrections. Upon reporting the violation to the local DOL the answer was "contact the state personnel board or the public employee relations board". I'm a bit confused, but the state violated the federal FMLA law and the DOL wants the state to address the issue? like that is going to happen.

    Here are the circumstances.

    Officer has FMLA that allows 2-3 days per week as needed by the Dr. FMLA was approved for a 1 year period this April by employer. Custody Captain authors a memorandum ordering all watch office Sgts to DENY this officer the ability to use FMLA, and to place him on AWOL status if he attempts to utilize his FMLA "until further notice". The officer attempted to utilize his FMLA and was informed by the watch Sgt that he was not allowed to use FMLA because the custody captain issued a memo denying his ability to use it. He was placed on AWOL status as he had a Dr's appt the day he needed to use his FMLA. Upon informing the union of the situation, they contacted the custody captain and the memo dissapeared and his AWOL was changed to FMLA and the captain says "ya, sorry, no violation occurred sorry for the confusion". Instead of holding the employer liable for this gross violation of the employee's FMLA rights the union helped the administration cover it up. I believe the officer should still report the violation so it is on record, at least two watch Sgts have read the memo and know about it's existence, he also has a copy of the daily staffing coverage sheet that shows he was AWOL that day that he attempted to use his FMLA... Why would the DOL not take issue with something like this? there's no grey area, he was straight denied his right to use FMLA, period. He didn't go over a certain number of days, or fail to renew or recertify, or anything else, he was just plain denied the right to use it. Any advice I can give him? thanks.

  • #2
    FMLA is a federal law (though Ca. does have their own version - CFRA). If the employee believes his federal FMLA rights are ever violated, he should report it to the US DOL - they oversee federal FMLA.
    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

    Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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    • #3
      He did, that's the problem...they told him to report it to the state personnel board or public employee relations board which are both state agencies, makes no sense.

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      • #4
        He might try reporting it to the above agencies (telling them that is what he was told to do by the DOL) & see what they say.

        Federal FMLA should be reported to the federal/US DOL & not the state DOL - did he report it to the federal DOL -- it seems so though per your last post.
        Last edited by Betty3; 06-21-2012, 04:02 PM.
        Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

        Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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        • #5
          How much time, total, has he taken?
          The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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          • #6
            betty3 - yeah he talked to federal DOL they told him that.

            cbg - maybe 20 days, he's used it in compliance with what dr put...

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