Has anyone been fired at work for being gay?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 08, 2012 8:22 AM GMT
    Totally not meaning to be a Danny downer, but has anyone been fired for being gay? A few months ago while working at GNC, I came out to my manager. The only reason I had told him was because we were somewhat close and he kept lecturing me on how to have confidence to go ask girls out on dates. Also, at this point I had also been coming out to nearly all my family and friends to boot. His response was of course one of shock (as well as listing why he thought I was gay after the fact :rollicon_smile.gif. Next he started asking if I had a crush on any of the guys at work as well as bringing up concerns on how it would affect the atmosphere if the others knew. A week later, on a Saturday, after this event I confided that I was trying to strengthen my male friendships as well as forging a new close relationship with a guy as friends. He acted a bit weird to that. Well the next day comes around and I am the only one working that day and everything goes swell... Until that following morning I'm called in at 9 am and told that I had left the door unlocked and thus am terminated from my job. He said corporate had come sometime mid morning and found it unlocked, called one of the guys to check it out and then called my manager.
    After some serious self denial my counselor at school, who I have been seeing for two years, expressed that it was most likely prejudice in the workplace. Even though I was naive to the situation of coming out at work, I believe strongly that I should be able to express my sexual orientation just as strongly as any other man or woman has the right to do, thus was why I did it...I'm still getting over it, but I couldn't help, but to ask if anyone else has been in this sort of a situation before.
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    Sep 08, 2012 11:28 AM GMT
    That's absolute fucking bullshit. Can you do something about it? File a lawsuit against them or whatever?
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    Sep 08, 2012 12:38 PM GMT
    Dude that is down right dirty !!..He was lecturing you how to pimp yourself out to random girls but..Now that he know you're gay...You're a threat to the integrity of the entire store..???
    ..You left the door unlocked..Good one!!
    A few years ago i was a dividend lead for a company... I was in a constant rumble with other leads because i feel they would "Set traps" for employees that they disliked!.. You left the door unlocked my ass !
    Sorry to hear that dude.. Get legal advise..from a gay friendly lawyer!
    ..
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    Sep 08, 2012 1:01 PM GMT
    See a lawyer. Many will give an initial consult for no charge, to determine if you have a case. You can also contact HRC to alert them to this case. Getting a lowered company rating from HRC may do a little to punish GNC for what they did to you.

    http://hrc.org
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    Sep 08, 2012 2:38 PM GMT
    Thanks for the info and clarification guys! Yeah, its totally been frustrating me especially this past month when everything really clicked together! He actually said that corporate had come at 3 am and called one of the other guys, not me by the way who had supposedly left the door open, to check the store out, then called in my manager who got there at 8 am. The whole thing was sketchy and while he was letting me go he was alternatively saying that I wasn't doing a good job of defending me, as well as saying how great of an employee I was. Thoroughly makes my blood pressure shoot up! I'm definitely going on the road to legal action as soon as school dies down, so hopefully this won't happen to someone else...In a ways this has been a huge learning lesson in what kind of people are really out there...
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    Sep 08, 2012 2:45 PM GMT
    If you are in a Right to Work state, then you can be fired "at any time for any reason or no reason." Which makes the discrimination hard to prove. If you are in a state with better protections, then the burden of proof would be on the location to prove that you left the door unlocked.

    What you might be able to prove with an attorney is that his discussions on how to attract girls made you feel uncomfortable and his subsequent behavior constituted a hostile work environment of harassment.

    However, I will warn you - you are young and these things can follow you when you apply for other jobs. It's kind of like a worker's comp claim - even though someone legitimately got injured on a job, when a company finds out that you have filed a worker's comp claim in the past, they are likely not going to hire you because their insurance premiums will shoot up as a result.

    I hate to put it like this and I wish that the circumstances were different, but it's likely that the best thing you can do now is move on to another job and take this as a life lesson.

    I am so sorry this has happened to you.

  • Import

    Posts: 7190

    Sep 08, 2012 2:46 PM GMT
    dude, this could be ur ticket to riches! The American dream! Sue Him!!!! Get a good Jewish lawyer and sue his pants off!!
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    Sep 08, 2012 2:49 PM GMT
    ConQuest saidIf you are in a Right to Work state, then you can be fired "at any time for any reason or no reason." Which makes the discrimination hard to prove. If you are in a state with better protections, then the burden of proof would be on the location to prove that you left the door unlocked.

    What you might be able to prove with an attorney is that his discussions on how to attract girls made you feel uncomfortable and his subsequent behavior constituted a hostile work environment of harassment.

    However, I will warn you - you are young and these things can follow you when you apply for other jobs. It's kind of like a worker's comp claim - even though someone legitimately got injured on a job, when a company finds out that you have filed a worker's comp claim in the past, they are likely not going to hire you because their insurance premiums will shoot up as a result.

    I hate to put it like this and I wish that the circumstances were different, but it's likely that the best thing you can do now is move on to another job and take this as a life lesson.

    I am so sorry this has happened to you.



    Yes and no for this. You can be fired for any reason, and you can sue your employer for unjust firing. Case in point, try firing someone because you dont want to comply with the ADA act. Yes, you can fire them, and you are still liable for being sued for wrongful firing.

    That being said, if the OPs manager was not comfortable with people talking about their sexuality, he probably shouldnt have brought it up in the first place.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19133

    Sep 08, 2012 2:52 PM GMT
    Am I seriously the only one here who thinks leaving a door unlocked to a business you're responsible for as the only one working is NOT grounds for termination? Granted, I think it warranted maybe a warning, and termination was a bit harsh, but I've been fired at jobs for far less. Even if it's not a "Right To Work" state, having left the door to the business unlocked overnight would, in my opinion, make suing for wrongful termination problematic.
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    Sep 08, 2012 2:53 PM GMT
    Chainers said
    ConQuest saidIf you are in a Right to Work state, then you can be fired "at any time for any reason or no reason." Which makes the discrimination hard to prove. If you are in a state with better protections, then the burden of proof would be on the location to prove that you left the door unlocked.

    What you might be able to prove with an attorney is that his discussions on how to attract girls made you feel uncomfortable and his subsequent behavior constituted a hostile work environment of harassment.

    However, I will warn you - you are young and these things can follow you when you apply for other jobs. It's kind of like a worker's comp claim - even though someone legitimately got injured on a job, when a company finds out that you have filed a worker's comp claim in the past, they are likely not going to hire you because their insurance premiums will shoot up as a result.

    I hate to put it like this and I wish that the circumstances were different, but it's likely that the best thing you can do now is move on to another job and take this as a life lesson.

    I am so sorry this has happened to you.



    Yes and no for this. You can be fired for any reason, and you can sue your employer for unjust firing. Case in point, try firing someone because you dont want to comply with the ADA act. Yes, you can fire them, and you are still liable for being sued for wrongful firing.

    That being said, if the OPs manager was not comfortable with people talking about their sexuality, he probably shouldnt have brought it up in the first place.


    Yes. the quotation marks are the exact language of the law for most states. You can sue for discrimination, but the burden of proof is on you and if he doesn't have witnesses who can validate his claims, it's a he said/he said case and is going to be difficult to prove. Thanks for adding the clarification.

    If you are to consult an attorney, I would approach it from the harassment standpoint - and creating an uncomfortable work environment. These types of things are becoming much more serious again. The manager's language was likely totally inappropriate. He may have gotten you fired for fear that you would come back and file a claim against him with the company.
  • FireDoor211

    Posts: 1030

    Sep 08, 2012 2:55 PM GMT
    I've hired people for being gay.
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Sep 08, 2012 3:01 PM GMT
    wait, so someone in the corporate realm found out you left the door the business unlocked overnight? that's actually a big deal that has nothing to do with you sucking dick.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19133

    Sep 08, 2012 3:04 PM GMT
    calibro saidwait, so someone in the corporate realm found out you left the door the business unlocked overnight? that's actually a big deal that has nothing to do with you sucking dick.



    Exactly! Granted, maybe the manager made the whole thing up to get the OP fired, but that would be a hard thing to prove....especially since someone from corporate, NOT the manager, initially found the door unlocked. Unless I missed it, I haven't seen the OP state that he DIDN'T leave the door unlocked.
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    Sep 08, 2012 3:08 PM GMT
    My question to the OP.

    Did you or did you not leave the door unlocked?

    PS to the other posters. Calif has protections for sexual orientation employment. NO one can be fired because of sexual orientation, period.
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Sep 08, 2012 3:08 PM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ said
    calibro saidwait, so someone in the corporate realm found out you left the door the business unlocked overnight? that's actually a big deal that has nothing to do with you sucking dick.



    Exactly! Granted, maybe the manager made the whole thing up to get the OP fired, but that would be a hard thing to prove....especially since someone from corporate, NOT the manager, initially found the door unlocked. Unless I missed it, I haven't seen the OP state that he DIDN'T leave the door unlocked.


    It's obvioulsy a setup. You're just like anyone else who blames the victim. You make excuses and justify prejudiced behaviors. It's so sickening.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 08, 2012 3:11 PM GMT
    OP..did you leave the door unlocked???..
    It will change the flow of the advice posted on this thread ..
    ...Now conquest made a point..if you persue this..there might be a trail left for future employers to see..
    ... Cutting your losses and moving on could save you tons of trouble..

    And CuriousJock .. i have witnessed first hand..how 2 of my buisness partners have falsley played upon the inconsistencies of employees in order to fabricate reasons termination!

    OP..did you leave the door unlocked??
    (Ok i'm taking this too seriously..my blood pressure is up...logging off)
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Sep 08, 2012 3:18 PM GMT
    HottJoe said
    CuriousJockAZ said
    calibro saidwait, so someone in the corporate realm found out you left the door the business unlocked overnight? that's actually a big deal that has nothing to do with you sucking dick.



    Exactly! Granted, maybe the manager made the whole thing up to get the OP fired, but that would be a hard thing to prove....especially since someone from corporate, NOT the manager, initially found the door unlocked. Unless I missed it, I haven't seen the OP state that he DIDN'T leave the door unlocked.


    It's obvioulsy a setup. You're just like anyone else who blames the victim. You make excuses and justify prejudiced behaviors. It's so sickening.


    obvioulsy
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19133

    Sep 08, 2012 3:18 PM GMT
    HottJoe said

    It's obvioulsy a setup. You're just like anyone else who blames the victim. You make excuses and justify prejudiced behaviors. It's so sickening.


    It's not all THAT obvious. Did he leave the door unlocked? I find it interesting that the OP's long initial post made no mention whatsoever that he absolutely DID NOT leave the door unlocked. It wouldn't exactly be the first time an employee fucked up and did that in a workplace. If he, in fact, did leave the door unlocked, this would be no small thing to a business owner -- especially one that is corporate run like a GNC. Playing "The Gay Card" to cover-up your own fuck-up and initiating a lawsuit makes it harder for those who may legitimately have a case. To be clear, I am not suggesting that is the situation here, but merely pointing out both possible sides of the story.
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    Sep 08, 2012 3:31 PM GMT
    You need to contact the Regional HR and if it was by your RHR's discretion that you were terminated you need to call the GNC Employee Hotline. Do you have any friends you can trust that can obtain the number for you? If not, contact the customer service GNC hotline and ask for the right number and who to talk to take action. If all else fails, write out an educated letter to the VP / President of the company explaining everything you explained on here but using key words / phrases (possible future bullying / following scrutinization / demoralizing or defeating atmosphere), though do not exaggerate anything that could be brought to the public; be prepared to have the letter seen by others.

    It's all too coincidental that your LP would show up during the time you came out to your boss. Corporate retailer visits go hardly unannounced. Also GNC should follow a corrective action program and to be terminated without any former write up in this instance is unjust. Do you also have an alarm system? Other lock doors? It seems odd that GNC would just have a front "locked door" and no other form of security.

    Best
    John
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    Sep 08, 2012 3:46 PM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ saidAm I seriously the only one here who thinks leaving a door unlocked to a business you're responsible for as the only one working is NOT grounds for termination? Granted, I think it warranted maybe a warning, and termination was a bit harsh, but I've been fired at jobs for far less. Even if it's not a "Right To Work" state, having left the door to the business unlocked overnight would, in my opinion, make suing for wrongful termination problematic.


    Leaving the door unlocked is a fireable offense. The problem is that it seems extremely convenient for corporate to stop by at that time of day. I worked in retail for years, and I can tell you that corporate officers don't show up unannounced. Store managers are given at least a couple of hours notice before they show up, and they never show up prior to a store opening.

    I think that's the concern--that this was a fabricated incident. We don't know all of the details. Just this one guy's side. If he did actually leave the door unlocked, GNC has a case to terminate employment. The problem is that it seems really convenient. That said, it may not have been his sexuality that caused him to be fired. It's possible he was terminated for being a poor employee, and they used this excuse to avoid conflict.

    Furthermore, was there a security alarm on the store? Most GNC's are equipped with them. If a door was left unlocked, even the slightest change in air pressure could have caused the door to open; thus triggering the motion detector alarm. Also, in situations like this, Loss Prevention agents usually do an investigation to ensure a there weren't any potential theft implications whether with cash or merchandise. Was an LP agent there during termination?
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    Sep 08, 2012 3:51 PM GMT
    redsoxfan791 said
    CuriousJockAZ saidAm I seriously the only one here who thinks leaving a door unlocked to a business you're responsible for as the only one working is NOT grounds for termination? Granted, I think it warranted maybe a warning, and termination was a bit harsh, but I've been fired at jobs for far less. Even if it's not a "Right To Work" state, having left the door to the business unlocked overnight would, in my opinion, make suing for wrongful termination problematic.


    Leaving the door unlocked is a fireable offense. The problem is that it seems extremely convenient for corporate to stop by at that time of day. I worked in retail for years, and I can tell you that corporate officers don't show up unannounced. Store managers are given at least a couple of hours notice before they show up, and they never show up prior to a store opening.

    I think that's the concern--that this was a fabricated incident. We don't know all of the details. Just this one guy's side. If he did actually leave the door unlocked, GNC has a case to terminate employment. The problem is that it seems really convenient. That said, it may not have been his sexuality that caused him to be fired. It's possible he was terminated for being a poor employee, and they used this excuse to avoid conflict.

    Furthermore, was there a security alarm on the store? Most GNC's are equipped with them. If a door was left unlocked, even the slightest change in air pressure could have caused the door to open; thus triggering the motion detector alarm. Also, in situations like this, Loss Prevention agents usually do an investigation to ensure a there weren't any potential theft implications whether with cash or merchandise. Was an LP agent there during termination?


    He brings up great points; WHO terminated you, was your district manager involved? Was there an exit interview? I'm assuming you were in a team member / part time position?
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    Sep 08, 2012 3:54 PM GMT
    Does it surprise anyone that CuriousJockAZ takes the corporation's side, and defends the firing of a gay employee? I think we all know his track record on gay rights issues. Just disregard him. icon_rolleyes.gif
  • HottJoe

    Posts: 21366

    Sep 08, 2012 3:57 PM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ said
    HottJoe said

    It's obvioulsy a setup. You're just like anyone else who blames the victim. You make excuses and justify prejudiced behaviors. It's so sickening.


    It's not all THAT obvious. Did he leave the door unlocked? I find it interesting that the OP's long initial post made no mention whatsoever that he absolutely DID NOT leave the door unlocked. It wouldn't exactly be the first time an employee fucked up and did that in a workplace. If he, in fact, did leave the door unlocked, this would be no small thing to a business owner -- especially one that is corporate run like a GNC. Playing "The Gay Card" to cover-up your own fuck-up and initiating a lawsuit makes it harder for those who may legitimately have a case. To be clear, I am not suggesting that is the situation here, but merely pointing out both possible sides of the story.


    Sure, human errors happen. Sometimes a surgeon amputates the wrong leg. Oops, big mistake. Doctors don't lose their jobs from honest mistakes. Retail is the worst job because you have no one in your court. It almost doesn't matter if the door was unlocked. It's his word against every level of management. I doubt there will be lawsuit or an opportunity to get his job back. That's just how it works in low paying jobs. Trust me, I've had my share. My advice to the OP is to get his ass in school so he can get out of the retail hellhole once and for all.
  • unicoman1

    Posts: 822

    Sep 08, 2012 3:59 PM GMT
    Call me naive, but I like to think rather logically, in today's day and age, even a place as reputable as GNC do people really get fired for doing nothing. I know i am hearing only 1 side of the story, but come on, In all my experiences I've only known people to get fired for doing something wrong.

    In this case coincidence maybe, but if you were discriminated against that's awful. Then I suggest don't just air it out here, Do something about it.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19133

    Sep 08, 2012 4:06 PM GMT
    Art_Deco saidDoes it surprise anyone that CuriousJockAZ takes the corporation's side, and defends the firing of a gay employee? I think we all know his track record on gay rights issues. Just disregard him. icon_rolleyes.gif


    I'll let my own words stand on their own, thank you very much. YOU are hardly one whose interpretation of anything around here is taken all that seriously. I'm not so much "defending the firing of a gay employee" as I am pointing out the reality that IF (and still waiting on an answer from the OP on this) the OP left the door unlocked than his firing may have been warranted. Even GAY employees are known to fuck up. If they do, they are not immune to being terminated. I'm in no way saying this is what happened here, only that there are probably two sides to the story.