No unemployment compensation for co-Worker’s offensive comments — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

No unemployment compensation for co-Worker’s offensive comments

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Employees who quit their jobs because they can’t get along with a co-worker usually aren’t entitled to unemployment compensation payments. But what if the difficult co-worker is actually making offensive and possibly discriminatory comments?
    In that case, the employee who quits may be eligible for unemployment compensation if he or she gives the employer a chance to fix the problem. If the employee simply leaves without letting the company know why, chances are benefits will be denied.
    Recent case: Sophie Ayad worked for Alia—the Royal Jordanian Airline—as a ticket agent. She quit after about seven months and filed for unemployment compensation. Her argument? She was compelled to leave because of a co-worker’s offensive comments.
    But the court rejected her claim, reasoning it was up to the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board to decide whether Ayad had left her position without good cause. Since the appeal board thought Ayad hadn’t given her employer a chance to fix the problem before she quit, she left without good cause. (In the Matter of Ayad and Alia, et al., No. 501610, Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, 2007)

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