Dear Prudence

Dear Prudence Uncensored: The Cruel Co-Worker and Kids

Every week, Danny Ortberg and Nicole Cliffe discuss a Prudie letter. This week: the cruel co-worker and kids.

Nicole: Oh, this poor woman!

Danny: this is a nightmare!

Nicole: Definitely do not record the children.

But I would go see your manager one more time, explain the slurs, and say that this is a major issue for you.

Danny: you’ve already complained to your manager and got (some) support, you should hopefully not have to record them in order to be believed

and stress that your coworker GRABBED YOUR CANE

I am pretty sure the ADA has something to say about that

Nicole: And that you don’t want to go to higher-ups to have the ACTUAL POLICY invoked (which I think is very kind, that she wants her fellow employees to be able to have WELL BEHAVED kids in the lobby to save on childcare)

Danny: yes I feel bad for those coworkers too, but you can’t just keep putting yourself through this

Nicole: But ultimately something will have to give

Which is ideally the manager telling this one employee that her kids are not allowed to be in the lobby.

Danny: I think this other employee should be fired

Nicole: I do not like her!!

Danny: she grabbed a coworker’s cane, the LW could have been fallen and been hurt

she should lose her job for this

Nicole: I think that would be a reasonable response the first time she spoke to the manager, but companies are unlikely to do so for a first time offense, and the manager has decided to make this about the kids and not the employee

I just do not think she’ll be fired (she should be)

Danny: yeah, I think you’re right, but I do hope the letter writer will at least consider speaking to HR and going above the manager’s head because grabbing your cane is so over-the-line

Nicole: If the kids do not tire of this and the manager won’t kick them out, I think running it up the flagpole is correct: the company has the policy to avoid being responsible for random kids

Danny: and people can get weirdly aggressive and violent towards disabled people, and the language of “fakery” feels like such a red flag that your coworker is looking for an excuse to harass you

Nicole: Ugh, yes

Danny: I think the LW needs to assume the kids will never get tired of it, that their mother is probably encouraging them to continue doing it, and the only way it will stop is if management intervenes. And management needs to intervene. This isn’t frivolous or something you need to overlook.

Nicole: Yes. Absolutely erase any thought of that from your mind.

Danny: parents! teach your children not to harass disabled people!

and ESPECIALLY don’t go around accusing people of faking their disabilities

Nicole: Basically a baseline requirement to be a non-crap person