Atlantis Alumni

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Not Liberal Florida Horror Story!

Our Friend Barbara writes:

"I am relieved to find your blog and so agree with all of it. I am living in a red state until I can figure out how to get back to NY. In the short course of my employment here I found out that Florida, land of the chad,is also an"at will" work state which means that individuals have no rights.As far as I can tell "At Will" "work is a polite descriptor for contemporary institutionalized slavery and is the creation by the same people who believe in outsourcing our work to countries who do use slaves to make goods. Now I can tell you this is an oxymoron: workers have no rights here and can be kicked out of work for any reason whatsoever with the exception of discrimination at the state level but I can tell you having been let go recently after two months of working for a company here in Florida that companies can make up any reason and throw the baby out with the bathwater. I was clearly discriminated against because I am an advocate for gay rights and suggested they create a support group for gay men in their facility.What's worse like a typical child sex abuse perpetrator I was told not to tell anyone or I would not get my severance pay. I had to sign a document that stated that I gave up all of my civil liberties under the law. This all in the context of a substance abuse treatment facility that wants the NY market! Can you imagine! In addition there is a move to create a Christian workplace in this facility as well. This is all mostly unspoken and happens underground since the company takes public monies. Each area of it has a Christian minister who presides over it overtly and not and I suspect weeds out those people who are not Christian or who are not invested in their agenda. I was fired because someone perceived me to have an interest in creating a "gay movement" on campus. "Don't talk, Don't tell" permeates the culture and workplace here.Make no mistake about it West Palm Beach is NOT a gay friendly place no matter how you look at it and if you have money Florida loves you but if you are a worker who needs work "fogetaboutit"."

Barbara Ann Levy

Barbara, we're sorry that Florida didn't work out for you. Hurry back to New York.

I'm not surprised at this story. The town in Florida with the highest concentration of gay and lesbian people, Ft. Lauderdale, has a rabidly homophobic mayor (Naugle) who has joined with conservative fundamentalist religious leaders in a campaign to demonize gays. There's no way we're moving to Florida or even considering visiting again anytime soon.


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