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Bait and Switch Employment in Pennsylvania

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  • Bait and Switch Employment in Pennsylvania

    Hi, I have a somewhat long and confusing story here… I work in a government job in Pennsylvania. To make a long story short what happened is I took a promotion after being promised certain training, and from the interview I was told I would be primarily a manger. Before I started the job I requested some computer based training courses from my new supervisor (and interviewer) and he replied with a list of courses. Shortly after I arrived my new supervisor sent me a training requirements document that stated the courses I needed to take; the ones they were going to send me to. I had a job description from the initial interview with my supervisor’s name on it but his title wrong; when I arrived at my new position within a few days I had to sign a second one with his correct title. About two weeks into the job we sat down with by supervisors’ boss to talk about something and he was “shocked” to find out that my supervisor had told me I would get all of this training, and stated they had wanted someone that was already qualified in an older technology (not the training he provided to me in the two e-mail documents); my boss said the two of them would talk… two days later my boss tells me he is leaving, and then “dumps” the section into my hands with one staff member on maternity leave, two positions not filled, and the contractors gone (was this a set up?). So the Division Chief gets involved, and tells me that there was a mistake, and that I have a lot of skills they can use, but in a different place and if I wanted to give up all of the promised training they will transfer me to another section, and all would be fine. I agreed and two days later after speaking with my new “to be” supervisor again told her that I agreed to waive the training and work for her; the Division Chief that same day said she was glad they could work something out. So a week later I start getting assignments from the new section and am sort of working in both sections; trying to straighten one out and start the new one. Well about a month ago they rescinded all of my assignments from the new section stating there are problems with HR, and they are “working on it”. I have just recently been informed they may “exercise the option” to write me an evaluation for my current (i.e. initial position), and of course would be a bad evaluation because of the lack of training, broken promises, etc…(I have all of the training they were to provide documented in e-mails and other paperwork). This bad evaluation can at the best send me back to a lower paying position in my old agency (which was horrible and I left because of it, going back would be a nightmare), and at worst start a track to fire me. I feel I was mislead/lied to twice, and feel as if I were set up, or had a “Bait and Switch” pulled on me. They even have admitted that it is very “messed up”, and that I got “messed over pretty good”. I am a veteran of the first Gulf War and have what my civilian doctorscall “Gulf War Syndrome”; I am still fighting the Veterans Administration from 1991 to present (now with an attorney); so my experience with legal matters and government is very confused. Is this a case of bait & switch? Are there laws that all government agencies need to follow regardless if they are a county, federal, state job…? Is there any action I can take?

    Thanks for all of your help!

  • #2
    Is this a case of bait & switch? It does not appear so. I don't see any indication in your narrative that management set out to defaud you. (Why would they???) Rather, the whole situation simply seems to be a huge cluster**** with the left hand having no idea what the right hand is doing.

    Are there laws that all government agencies need to follow regardless if they are a county, federal, state job…? Generally speaking, yes, but none of those apply here. No laws require employers to manage well, not even government employers.

    Is there any action I can take? You can certainly avail yourself of any internal grievance process but I don't see any legal remedy. Your employer is guilty of bad management and extremely poor planning but that's not against the law.


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