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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec. 31, 2012
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    59

    Default What is the point of sick time if you cant use it?!? vent.

    Maybe I just dont understand the "concept" of sick time...


    I work a 8:30-5 office job, where I sit with 6 people in an incredibly small room with 5 other people. I also work in a hospital, where there are signs posted EVERYWHERE about flu season. I started feeling a little "iffy" on Friday, but chalked it up to just being stressed. Felt better on saturday, but I had a bit of a crazy weekend, running around doing lots of errands. Come sunday night, I felt totally dead. Pulled myself out of bed monday morning, but shot my supervisor a text telling him I wasnt feeling well, and if things werent too crazy, I was going to skip out a bit early.

    He didnt respond, but when I got to my desk, he approached me and asked me to stick it out, as we were short on coverage. OK, I will do what I can. I spent all day getting ahead of my work, planning on taking tuesday off to sleep this bug off. (Meanwhile, my colleagues were begging me to just go home -- since we work in a small office, if one gets sick, we all do!)

    Told him around 2pm on Monday that I was not planning on coming in tomorrow. I have coverage, my work is up to date.

    His answer? "go home with a smile, maybe you will feel better. Text me in the morning"

    Umm... no. I feel sick as all get out, and I really dont want to have to get up at 5am (my normal wake up) just to shoot you a text saying I am not coming in. I am NOT coming in!

    "Well, maybe you will feel better tomorrow."

    NO!

    What is the point of sick time if I feel like I cant use it?!?!?

    Not only am I not functioning up to my full capabilities, but I am probably getting other people in the office sick!

    Does anyone else have this issue?

    (also -- I've never "called out" or taken a sick day prior to now. I always request my time off, as necessary.)


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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 17, 2002
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    between the barn and the pond
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    13,654

    Default

    Go to the Dr. Get a note. Fax it to the office. Done.

    I hope you feel better soon!
    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. (Steven Wright)



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2008
    Posts
    322

    Default

    I don't, but i have heard that is common in hospitals. My office manager who was a nurse (who eventually was a head, HR type person) has told me that used to happen to her. Which is CRAZY because why would you want a sick person around people who are recovering from surgeries/have compromised immune systems?!


    4 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr. 29, 2006
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    3,190

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    That's the exact same where I work. You are told to stay home when you're sick but if you actually do, you get disciplined for it. It's ridiculous.

    I worked at one place where they moved to UNLIMITED sick time. No questions asked. They found they reduced overall sick time by an astronomical amount because sick people stayed home and didn't infect everyone else, so they kept the policy.


    11 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May. 12, 2008
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    3,874

    Default

    You were never told you cannot use sick time. Your boss just wants you to be sure you are actually sick.

    In the various places I worked, it was generally iffy for someone to 'call out' the day before, especially tell your boss in the afternoon that you will not be in the next day. You may or may not look sick to him, hence it may be seen as you trying to take a day off to do something else and use sick time instead of vacation time.

    To me, this is small stuff - it sucks to get up at your regular time just to send him a text, but this also could mean-to him- that at least you tried to come to work and that's what he wants to see.

    Sick time is not the same as vacation time - it should not be seen as 'planned'. What you were doing was leaning more on the 'planning a day off' side of not working, than the 'just woke up and feel like death warmed over' side of not working.


    5 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar. 10, 2009
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    5,079

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    Happened to me years ago. Supervisor was a d*** anyway, had me coming in with bad flu and a 102 fever. Finally "let" me take my sick time when I ended up in hospital getting IVs for severe dehydration.

    Got the last laugh, though, as he ended up covering every shift there mostly by himself for the rest of the week. His insistence on me staying sick meant, of course, that the rest of my staff were sick and called out.

    I work for reasonable people now.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr. 29, 2006
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    3,190

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    I had a bit of a different read on the situation. She went into work feeling crummy and gave her boss a head's up that she took care of everything because she logically expected she would be sicker the next day and need to stay home.

    The logical thing for the boss to do was say, if you feel this awful, stay home and get better. BUT - if you wake up feeling better, we'll look forward to seeing you and be happy you're in and feeling better.


    8 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec. 31, 2012
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    59

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajierene View Post
    You were never told you cannot use sick time. Your boss just wants you to be sure you are actually sick.

    In the various places I worked, it was generally iffy for someone to 'call out' the day before, especially tell your boss in the afternoon that you will not be in the next day. You may or may not look sick to him, hence it may be seen as you trying to take a day off to do something else and use sick time instead of vacation time.

    To me, this is small stuff - it sucks to get up at your regular time just to send him a text, but this also could mean-to him- that at least you tried to come to work and that's what he wants to see.

    Sick time is not the same as vacation time - it should not be seen as 'planned'. What you were doing was leaning more on the 'planning a day off' side of not working, than the 'just woke up and feel like death warmed over' side of not working.
    Interesting take.

    I honestly thought I was doing him a favor by giving the heads up the day before (instead of blindly calling out at 5am the day of), but I didnt think of it this way.


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  9. #9
    Join Date
    May. 8, 2006
    Location
    Northern Indiana
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    738

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    Same thing happens in college -- prof says on the first day of class that you should stay home if you're sick......in the next breath, they're telling you there are no make-ups for missed quizzes/late homeworks/etc. If you're like me, a few points is a big deal. Thankfully, I don't get sick often and have a decent immune system, but this time of year it means there's more than one hacking, coughing, ill-looking face in lecture.

    Thankfully, my bosses know that I have to be feeling *really* awful to call in sick/not work from home and understand the moment I say it that I'm working on getting better.
    To be loved by a horse should fill us with awe, for we hath not deserved it.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul. 20, 1999
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    CA
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    3,185

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    Quote Originally Posted by pandemonium33 View Post

    Told him around 2pm on Monday that I was not planning on coming in tomorrow. I have coverage, my work is up to date.

    His answer? "go home with a smile, maybe you will feel better. Text me in the morning"

    Umm... no. I feel sick as all get out, and I really dont want to have to get up at 5am (my normal wake up) just to shoot you a text saying I am not coming in. I am NOT coming in!

    "Well, maybe you will feel better tomorrow."

    NO!

    What is the point of sick time if I feel like I cant use it?!?!?


    While it's impossible to hear his tone through your typing here, it certainly sounds like a guy who just hopes you feel better. He never actually said "no, you can't take a sick day" did he? As a manager, I've never considered my "hope you feel better soon" well-wishing response to a sick employee could be taken as "slacker, come in to work or else." Perhaps I need to reconsider my words...?


    1 members found this post helpful.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct. 12, 2001
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    Center of the Universe
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    Sick time is not the same as vacation time - it should not be seen as 'planned'. What you were doing was leaning more on the 'planning a day off' side of not working, than the 'just woke up and feel like death warmed over' side of not working.
    I don't know. I have often felt that if you COULD take these days where you feel like you just need to sleep you would avoid actually becoming sick- how often have you felt "crummy", and just kept going and then got really sick and non-functional for 3-4 days? maybe if you had felt free to take a day to rest when you first felt crummy you wouldn't have gotten sick at all. From an employer's perspective, one day vs. 4 days out?


    2 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12
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    Aug. 15, 2008
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    4,552

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kat_Renee View Post
    I don't, but i have heard that is common in hospitals. My office manager who was a nurse (who eventually was a head, HR type person) has told me that used to happen to her. Which is CRAZY because why would you want a sick person around people who are recovering from surgeries/have compromised immune systems?!
    My husband (and ER nurse) got written up in December (last month of the year). For taking his fifth sick day. OF THE YEAR.
    "Aye God, Woodrow..."


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  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2005
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    Alabama
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    7,411

    Default

    When I worked at a job for ten years I had one person there that would always come in while she was sick. She was doing it deliberately, and thought it was funny when someone else got sick after she came in spreading her germs around. She was such a loser.
    You can't fix stupid-Ron White



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2010
    Location
    Westford, Massachusetts
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    3,179

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by pandemonium33 View Post
    Interesting take.

    I honestly thought I was doing him a favor by giving the heads up the day before (instead of blindly calling out at 5am the day of), but I didnt think of it this way.
    Yeah, that's the way it's always been everywhere I've worked...we couldn't plan to be sick, or assume we'd be sick, but had to call in sick each day we were sick, unless we were out on some kind of disability or extended leave. So, it's get out of bed in the morning, decide you are too sick to work, call boss. It's also usually OK to have someone else call in and tell your boss you are sick, if you feel to sick to get up and make a phone call.

    Now, on possibly discouraging you from going home early or calling in sick when you are sick, that's never a good approach, because, as you say, it could spread around the whole office quickly.

    I used to work for an employer with unlimited sick days and it did work well there, but it was a smallish startup with only professional employees...at a larger company with a lot support staff, it might get abused more.

    My current employer allows us to work from home if we are sick, which works out really well...people don't even come in with bad head colds and there is little illness spreading around at work. We're in a big cube farm, so we're close together and always sharing the same air. There are many occasions where you might be contagious, but are physically well enoug to sit in front of computer and work, so this is, I feel, a pretty good policy.



  15. #15
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    Feb. 9, 2011
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    IE SoCal
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    Quote Originally Posted by Long Spot View Post
    My husband (and ER nurse) got written up in December (last month of the year). For taking his fifth sick day. OF THE YEAR.
    As someone who had to go to the ER recently, got treated by an obviously sick nurse and ended up with the flu on top of everything else, I have to wonder how fostering this sort of work culture isn't getting the hospitals sued left and right. I was extra miserable for a couple weeks but ultimately OK - adding the flu to an already serious issue could have KILLED a very old, young or more comprimised person.
    ______________________________________________
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    1 members found this post helpful.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr. 15, 2008
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    1,301

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    As a supervisor, I too question folks who predict they will be sick. We have a very generous sick leave policy and still people abuse it by trying to use sick to augment vacation, call in sick on Fridays and Mondays. I also have folks who will come in when sick; I send them home.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Nov. 24, 2006
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    1,007

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    My husband works for Coca-Cola, their policy just sucks. He's got hundreds of sick time hours accrued. They have a policy, when you call off sick, you get an "event"... after so many "events" you get a warning and it snowballs from there. So, in his case, you absolutely get penalized for using your sicktime.
    Kerri



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    751

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    We get no sick days, if we are sick we have 2 options, take a vacation day or go to work. If you are out of vacation days, you can take off with out pay (you should be close to dead for this) or come to work.
    I hate this policy! If one of us gets sick we all get sick, you can read my blog post titled "Very Cold and Flu season" That was the only week I wrote about it but it lasted nearly 3 weeks. Most days the healthiest did their best to get something done and the real sickies slept in the trucks.
    Railgirl.blogspot.com



  19. #19
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    Feb. 27, 2004
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    We have PTO, use the same for sick or vacation. Your allowed so many occurrences in a 6 month period (which is a moving 6 months) I can't remember the number you are allowed. If you take an unscheduled day then another, it's one occurrence. If you take one come back to work a day, then take another it's 2. If your off 3 unscheduled days in a row you need a Dr's note. What I don't like is people will call in at 6:05 to say they are sick, when they were suppose to be there at 6. Esp when they were off the day before. It's just unthoughtful to your coworkers who have to scramble to cover your position (I work in a hospital laboratory on weekends, when we short staff anyway).



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec. 29, 1999
    Location
    Harrisburg, PA USA
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    You must be an American. Unfortunately, in many non-government offices, taking a sick day is frowned upon, even if not overtly, in the good ol' USA.

    Aside from that, if an employee came in when I asked even though she wanted to stay home sick, and then at the end of that day said she was caught up and would most likely stay home tomorrow, I don't consider that as suspiciously "predicting" a sick day. She called in sick on Monday but came in because you needed the help. She helped you and now she needs her sick day, probably more than before she worked when she should've been home resting.

    Now, calling off on a Monday or a Friday is always suspicious. Esp. the Monday after Super Bowl Sunday. Not saying this applies to you, OP, but you'd be surprised how many people, when you look at their attendance for the year, turns out their sick days are almost always on a Monday or a Friday. It's the abusers like that that have made employers look down on sick days. Unfair, but that's the way it is.



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