Another Case of Municipal Bullying on the Job in Cornwall Ontario – Paramedic Erica Stacey Tells Her Story to CFN & The Journal – March 8, 2012

Another Case of Municipal Bullying on the Job in Cornwall Ontario – Paramedic Erica Stacey Tells Her Story to CFN  & The Journal – March 8, 2012

Hello Mr. Gilcig,

I am writing regarding an article you wrote dated Nov 10, 2011 called,

Some of the Poop on the Pilon vs Cornwall Case, Robert Menagh, Paul Fitzpatrick and the City of Cornwall Axing our Advertising with them because of Anonymous Comments

I was a paramedic for the City until I injured myself at work in Feb. 2007.  I sustained a permanent injury which ended my career.  

CFN –  And that’s how this story begins.   Someone that fell through gaping cracks.  Actually falling isn’t the right word.  Someone that was smashed through the cracks simply for the only reason that they were hurt on the job.  A system that didn’t listen, didn’t seem to care, and simply was looking for the cheapest way to rid themselves of someone who simply wasn’t a cog in the machine any longer.

And they couldn’t even bother to retrain her so that she could do something with the rest of her life as Erica didn’t want to just be “disabled” and sit at home.

When you and I are in trouble what do we do normally?   We dial 911.  When we call for help whether it be Police, Fire, or for a Paramedic do we think about that person racing to our assistance?  But what happens to them if they get hurt? Or worse can’t work anymore?

I haven’t seen a story like this since Boxer the Horse in Animal Farm finally broke down.    For some reason listening to Erica yesterday in the offices of The Journal in Cornwall Ontario connected me to that story.

What should be done when one of our emergency staff are hurt on the job seems very different than what has happened in this situation.

The reason I am writing is because I am in complete desperation to get assistance with my case.

Imagine feeling that way?  Imagine being hurt at the age of 33 and by the time you’re 37 feeling that your life is over?    Imagine not having full use of your right arm and being forced to come into work and being told that you couldn’t cut it washing ambulances and doing tasks that simply put in you further pain, but toughing it out as best you could.

Imagine not being able to take medication while at work because it could “impair” your performance.    Imagine your employer refusing doctors letters that clearly state positions and having the instructions ignored, and imagine eventually ending up so distraught you end up being psychiatrically treated, and losing everything you have and being forced to go bankrupt.

And imagine waking up at 37 wondering what you’re going to do with the rest of your life, or worse ending it.

This isn’t the first case of this nature in Cornwall Ontario.  What is it about City Staff and Management that have led to cases like this one, Marie Anne Pilon, and Diane Shay?   There are a handful of others I can’t mention by name that are in various degrees of action right now; from Arbitration to complaint.     And there are those that simply are in fear of stepping forward.

Is it time for an inquiry here to investigate why Cornwall is having these issues?  Is it the culture emanating from the CAO and management?    Is it time that maybe some of these people lose their jobs?  Is it time to finally stand up to some of the bullies?

Cornwall is a city of “Don’t Tell”.    Project Truth showed that and anyone that did tell is run out of town like Perry Dunlop.    That though is for another story.

We will be adding more about Erica’s case as we’re still editing video and following up on the immense amount of material we have to sift through.

My especial thanks to Greg Kielec of The Journal.   When I was contacted by Erica I called out to him.  In the media it’s not all cut throat.   Getting a scoop sometimes isn’t as important as getting it right and Greg will be covering this story as well.  His knowledge and experience as a journalist has been immensely helpful in moving this story forward.

As for Erica all she wants at this point is to to have a life and hope.   I don’t think that’s too much to ask for.    We’re hoping to find a lawyer that specializes in situations like this  to assist her.

You can email or phone us at info@cornwallfreenews.com or dial 613 361 1755.

Part 1 of Erica’s Story

You can also post your comments below.

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23 Comments on "Another Case of Municipal Bullying on the Job in Cornwall Ontario – Paramedic Erica Stacey Tells Her Story to CFN & The Journal – March 8, 2012"

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hailey Brown
Member
I’m sorry but there appears to be so much information missing here. What happened? Is this really a city issue or a WSIB or Employment Standards issue? I am not sure what was injured, but I can suggest a great therapy and place to see it done correctly. I have back issues and though not chronic pain there is a constant reminder that something is out of place. I was unable to move my shoulder much higher than chest level without severe pain. I seen Chiropractors for years and that was all about keep on coming in and keep on… Read more »
Jason
Guest
As the story stands, it isn’t anything bad. Discouraging? Absolutely! But foul play by the city or government? Hardly. She was injured, therefore was unable to work… light duties were prescribed, but that too was too much for her as taking medications could be inhibiting and therefore not allowed in this job type. Perhaps there is more to the story, but how it stands… it is simply a story that should remind us all to not be so dependent upon our employers or government… and perhaps take 100% responsibility for ourselves and our family and ensure we are protected (… Read more »
Constance
Guest

Response to Jason.

wsib IS insurance!

guest
Guest

I don’t think it was the medication that prevented her from working….. being told you cant have any pain relief was just one issue from what I understand!

Donna
Guest

We all need to hear the rest of the story to be able to fill in the blanks. Once the whole story comes out, we will clearly see the full picture this city paints (not pretty)

john
Guest

Not sure about this story not all of it seems to be here but in life you have to stand up for yourself and don’t let people step all over you no matter what or report any problems to higher people like your boss or the big boss of the company

Cliff Feltham
Guest

It disgusts me when our various levels of governments mistreat those people who risk life and limb for the betterment of our society. Paramedic, Canadian Soldier, Life long Firefighter….it doesn’t matter. When you get hurt and are no longer useful you are discarded like the garbage that they think you are.

Constance
Guest

I concur Cliff. This isn’t the first time that a level of government has turned their back on a hero to society. Just ask injured war veterans. That’s what these people are….heroes, they always shy away from being called that.

All my best to Ms. Stacey.

Jason
Member

@ Constance…. WSIB does provide disability benefits, but who the heck relies on government only programs? That would be like me depending on Canadian Pension Plan for my retirement, that’s ridiculous and not very prudent. Likewise, people should take 100% responsibility for their own security and buy supplemental disability insurance to protect themselves.

John
Guest
I was reading the story and comments that came with it and I truly believe it’s time for some positive and supportive ones. First off kudos to Erica for coming forward after such a lengthly battle and years of keeping quiet. I’m sure it was very difficult for you to speak about this and make this decision. You must keep a positive attitude and realize that although everyone is entitled to their opinions many are misinformed and don’t understand something they’ve never had to deal with or who have never been flushed by the system. Paramedics are often overlooked when… Read more »
Sarah
Guest

I see that it is the beginning of the story only but really. These women and men put there bodies on the line every day to help us out. WSIB and the workplace are supposed to help protect us. If in the long run she can not do her original job they should be helping her to retrain. She was clearly willing to work even though it was causing her extreme physical pain. Anyway I support her and I hope that the city takes responsibility for its actions and provides appropriate retraining and support while she is doing it.

Stan
Member

Shame on City Hall! When are we going to wake up and smell the coffee?

hailey Brown
Member
Wait a minute , why is everyone formulating opinions based on such little information. I am not questioning what hapened but that we are jumping to conclucsions with only part of the story. I think we should wait until this unfolds before we start pointing fingers and laying blame. I also think it is good that it is brought to light, maybe it can help change practices a little more. Go easy freenews. This practice is wht Toews wants people’s IP address. The internet is an awsome tool but like any other tool it can do more harm then good… Read more »
Wow!
Guest

@Jason

You are a great humanitarian. Keep buying insurance.

Harold
Guest
To Hailey Brown: Put yourself into the position of watching the trauma unfold after you witness a sibling, a son or daughter even a friend, breakdown after being abused. You are seeing and living with this abuse, and realize that someone is responsible to cause this.You know something has to be done to prevent this abuse from hurting anyone else. You do not rationalize the situation, by creating a reason or excuse for the abuser to do these in-humane things to someone. It seems to me you are a person that would blame the abused for being in the wrong… Read more »
Stan
Member

This will probably just turn into “another gripe paid off behind closed doors”. We’ll probably never hear what happened in the end or how much was paid out. Hopefully Andre Rivette and the Cornwall Free News will keep us apprised.

Constance
Guest

@ Jason.

So you’re saying that having private insurance would stop the abuse by the employer. Or if the abuse was bad enough and you left the job the ‘private’ insurance would support you.

I would like to know the name of the private insurance company that would have made all of this ok.

Jason? Do you have an answer??

Jason
Member

@ Constance… what I’m saying is as the story stands, there doesn’t seem to be any abuse from the employer, just an unfortunate series of events for the employee.

Jason
Member

@ Wow! …. buying insurance and protecting one’s livelihood is smart, not humanitarian.

Grace
Guest

I have a feeling Jason sells insurance for a living.

Harold
Guest

Jason: Stick to selling insurance, something you are good at.

Eleanor
Guest

What a sad story. Isn’t there someone who can help Erica in her fight for some justice. Thank you Erica for being brave enough to come forward with your story. Ihope you will find someone to help you carry on.

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