There is little that is more frustrating than being punished for doing the right thing. A nurse recently claimed in an eastern Texas court that her former employer fired her for making reports about patient neglect.
The licensed vocational nurse said in a lawsuit that her report of neglect involved a patient for whom she provided in-home nursing services during a late shift. On the late shift, she reportedly noticed that the day shift nurse was failing to provide the proper care.
When she told her supervisors about the neglect and abuse the patient was sustaining from the daytime nurse, the supervisors allegedly told her not to document the negative things she had witnessed or the effects of the substandard care.
Two weeks later, she was fired. Her employer said that it fired the nurse because of her unprofessional behavior and inappropriate documentation of patients’ medical records.
The woman has sued her former employer, arguing that she was fired for reporting the company’s violation of Texas health and safety laws.
She is asking the court for damages for lost wages and benefits, as well as damages for mental anguish, among other costs. She has also requested job reinstatement and an injunction to stop the medical care provider from continuing such illegal employment practices.
A jury trial has been requested.
This lawsuit is an example of the legal recourse that may be available to employees in Houston who lose their jobs due to retaliation.
Source: Southeast Texas Record, “Nurse sues former employer after losing job for reporting patient neglect,” Michelle Keahey, Feb. 5, 2013
- Our employment law firm in Houston helps workers seek legal recourse after being victims of retaliatory treatment. More information about employment rights is available on our Employment Law page.