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Can I get unemployment in California if I was fired for insubordination?

by Jan
(San Luis Obispo,Ca USA)

I got fired because my boss did not like the way I responded when she believed lies told about me from other employee.


Misconduct
I work at a hotel/bed in breakfast. It consist of 25 rms. We do the laundry, serve the breakfast and ck guest in and out and answer phones and take reservations all this with no official breaks. Eighty percent of the time we are on our own.

I reminded the head housekeeper to separate the laundry. That has always been their responsibility, but they will do it for awhile and then try to get away without doing it. My position has to wash the dirty laundry, dry it, fold it and put it away. So I reminded the housekeeper to separate the laundry again and they didn't like it.

I didn't think anything of it. This was Sunday afternoon and I was not scheduled for my next shift until the next Wed. afternoon.
In the mean time one of my colleagues told me the housekeeper told the owner we were sitting around talking and that I wasn't starting the laundry soon enough. We couldn't believe it because it wasn't true.

The housekeeper went to the owner because he thought I was going to tell her he wasn't separating the laundry. My colleague said she laughed it off, but when the owner approached me and said we were sitting around talking and told me to start the laundry sooner I reacted a little differently.

I let it build up in me some. I told yes we talk when we a changing shifts and there is nothing wrong with that. We don't sit around and talk. I told her I can't believe you are talking to me about the laundry. I have worked here over a year and you think I just decided to not do the laundry one day. I said I am really "f"ing upset. (I did not say the "f"work, just literally said "f"ing). I have been a very loyal, honest worker for over a year and I thought I meant more to the establishment. I thought she trusted me. She said last week when she came in I didn't have the laundry stacked up. I told her that is because I already folded it. Plus the phones were ringing a lot. I couldn't believe she believe the housekeeper. I told her I was very upset about this. It really felt like a real slap in the face. This was all done at the hotel but nobody was around. She ask me to leave. I said are you laying me off or am I fired. She said I don't know. Three hours later she had her husband call me and tell me they didn't want me back. I couldn't believe it. The next day I talked to her and she gave me my vacation pay and said she would give me a good recommendation. I asked her husband if I was fired or laid off. He said fired. I asked what for in her said insubordination. He said I was rude to the owner. I felt like I was just defending myself from lies told against me. I guess if I would of just said ok when told to get the laundry sooner and not stood up for myself and been submissive I would still have a job, but defending yourself-is that Misconduct.


Hi Jan,

I personally don't think standing up for oneself is bad, but I'm not the one that decides who gets unemployment. Had you ever been warned before? This does matter.

I also think the details matter. In other words, you became upset when the employer assumed that what the housekeeper said was truth. I personally, find that understandable. The f**ing part may have been a bit much. Were you yelling??

I just noticed you live in California. Unless you've downplayed your reaction...I wouldn't like the case for the employer's side....especially if you had never been warned before, but like I said...I wasn't there to hear you..so you'll need to be your own judge of whether it was out of line or not.

See the Calfornia eligibility guide for a discussion of how the state views your actions....it's under Misconduct - Insubordination.

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