Cheryl Bergeron Bonie 
Member since Sep 24, 2012



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Re: “A benefit for Times-Picayune employees — and 60 Minutes is in town

Where was the DashThirtyDash when the T/P called me into their office 6mos post-op major lumbar surgery January '08 & told me I had a decision to make before I left the room, "sign your retirement papers or we'll fire you". They only offered me a retire or fire choice knowing I was legally separated & had emergency abdominal surgery 6 mos prior to the lumbar surgery. It's a good thing their printer jammed that day because by the time the retirement papers were printed, I had to leave for my evening job & it was Friday afternoon. This afforded me the chance to review their T/P Employees Handbook where it was printed, "that an employee who had 15 yrs of service (and I had that) was entitled to 15 mos medical leave of absence w/o pay". The Dept Head & the CEO never even offered me THAT choice. Was it Divine Intervention that their printer jammed that Friday evening? They had to approve my leave & the following month I had my previously scheduled surgery for an adrenal tumor followed by bilateral knee replacements & toe surgeries & eventually needed a revision of my lumbar surgery in 11/09 & bilateral carpal tunnel releases in Nov/Dec '10 & may be looking @ cervial fusion surgery in the near future. Too bad their employees were never allowed to have a Union 'cause I don't think I would have been talked to or treated the way I was if we had union representation. I wasn't even allowed to talk to the Worker's Comp representative to see if all my physical problems were not related to my job duties & could be construed as a basis for a Worker's Compensation Case. I had no income for 15 months & had to withdraw my 401K to survive financially. I felt I had to apply for SSDI & my advocate won the case so I eventually did retire on April Fool's Day '09. Too bad 60 Minutes, Morley Safer & Andersen Cooper weren't interested in my plight; maybe my car would not have been impounded by the T/P Credit Union & my 401K could have remained intact if someone had raised funds for me to survive on during all my surgical procedures. With 3 yrs college educational background, I had begged the head of my dept to be given a desk job so my back could have the MD recommended 1 yr to recover but he would not agree to this. He expected me to return to pushing around carts loaded down with 50 bundles of papers after only 6 mos post-op recovery; I had returned to the driving portion of my job title duties but refused to jeopardize my very expensive lumbar surgery. I think I had a small stroke & heart attack because of all these happenings. I thought there were laws to protect employees w/ medical problems/disabilities esp ones that may have been caused and/or aggravated by job title duties. My life was never the same after that late Friday afternoon meeting on the 2nd floor of the Howard Ave Office in January '08 w/ the Dept Head & the CEO! Ms. Cheryl Bergeron Bonie, retired/disabled 15 yr employee of the Circulation Dept @ T/P

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Posted by Cheryl Bergeron Bonie on 09/24/2012 at 2:59 AM

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