HR Strange But True!
September 17, 2004

We all know that HR is never dull, but sometimes it can get downright strange...

Fired Over a Bumper Sticker

Lynne Gobbell of Moulton, Alabama, had a John Kerry-John Edwards bumper sticker in the rear windshield of her Chevrolet Lumina. According to her, that didn't sit well with Phil Gaddis, owner of the factory where she worked. Gaddis, she says, ordered her to remove it, or be fired.

"We were going back to work from break, and my manager told me that Phil said to remove the sticker off my car or I was fired," Gobbell told a local newspaper, the Decatur Daily. "I told him that Phil couldn't tell me who to vote for. He said, 'Go tell him.'"

So she went to Gaddis' office, where an exchange between the two ended with Gaddis telling Gobbell to "get out of here." Uncertain as to whether she'd lost her job, Gobbell went back to her duties. But a few minutes later, according to her account, a manager who'd just spoken to Gaddis came to her and said: "I reckon you're fired. You could either work for him or John Kerry."

The Daily reported that it tried to get Gaddis's side of the dispute, but he did not return phone calls. The newspaper also reported that prior to the incident, employees opened their pay envelopes to find fliers from Gaddis that listed the things made possible by President Bush's tax cut, including their jobs.

Gobbell, meanwhile, consulted a lawyer but decided against hiring him. She went instead to a state office and applied for unemployment compensation. "The lady there said that she has never heard of a firing like this before," Gobbell told the Daily.

As it turned out, Gobbell didn't need state assistance. On Tuesday, she got a call from Kerry, who had read of her plight and asked her to take a paying job in a local campaign office.

She said Kerry told her, "Let him know that as of today, you're working for John Kerry."

Sources: The Decatur (Alabama) Daily, The Associated Press, via Yahoo!

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