is it illegal for your employer to schedule you in a house…

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+1529 – So I currently work in disability, my employer tried to schedule me in a home for a sleep shift (5pm-9am) I declined the shift as I wasn’t available to do it. But when talking to one of my co workers, i found out that one of the clients is a registered sex offender. My employer didn’t disclose this information when calling me and I was wondering if that is illegal.

For context I’m a 20F who doesn’t even reach five foot and the home is three males, two have full mobility and one wheelchair bound. The sex offender is 6foot and apparently extremely strong.

Edit: I’m in Australia

2022-08-06 12:43:07

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  1. I worked in home health for exactly one week before returning to assisted living. The company who I worked for sent me (20f) to a home where the man was scooter bound, but strong and very smart. After one day he kept making comments and wanting me to cuddle with him. Told him very sternly but politely that I was his caregiver and only there to clean up after him. I ended up walking out when he held my hips roughly and tried to kiss me and grab my breasts. Called him a dirty old man and told the company what happened. They told me they had problems with him before and was only allowed male caregivers for a while. I wasn’t told any of that going in and I was pissed. But unfortunately In the us at least they don’t have to tell you those things. I would be very assertive in the future though, when you are sent to a new clients home make sure you ask specifically if the client has a history because you shouldn’t be put in situations like that to begin with. And they wonder why there’s a nursing and caregiver shortage

  2. Are you under 18? No. Is your employer government contracted? Through HHS or Medicare? Because your Co worker knows. Does that mean your boss knew? Also… You have the right to decline unsafe situations when working home health. This is clear cut case where you can decline and not be “feet to the fire” so to speak. You just won’t get paid.

  3. No it’s not illegal. It should be disclosed, however, and your employer should arrange for 2 people to go. I’m surprised that a security guard isn’t assigned to you when you go. You should find out how your employer gets paid (like through ndis or something) and follow up through other channels. Your employer may not know.

  4. You can not excpect answers to legal questions without saying which country you’re talking about.

  5. I work in New York State in group homes for adults with developmental disabilities. I happen to work at a home with 8 men. Seven are on the registry. We have not had any problems between the guys and the female staff. Having said that you need to talk to your employer and let them know that you are not comfortable working in a house with a sex offender. Your employer should not put you in a situation that makes you uncomfortable. You always have the right to read the history of anyone you are expecting to support or at least get a quick summary of important facts before you get there. Laws and practices may vary where you live.

  6. It may fall under Duty of Care obligations of your employer towards employees.

    I’d contact your union and/or Fair Work. If they cannot help you they should at least be able to direct you to the Act which the employer must adhere to. Get the exact title of the Act so you can be sure it is up to date and includes any amendments. I would also call the Law Institute in your state/territory for advice and/or referral to the appropriate authority.

    At the very least it is unethical because your employer has previous knowledge that the environment is unsafe for female workers due to the client’s actions. Covid difficulties do not trump Duty of Care to employees.

    Also, most providers get paid for providing care to clients – they have the right to discontinue service to a client (but often don’t like losing the $$$). It is the employers responsibility to provide the appropriate care for clients and in this case that means male workers.

    I’d honestly quit this employer. There’s plenty of decent providers out there desperate for staff.

  7. I work with people with disabilities (mostly intellectual disabilities and autism). It’s not illegal for your employer to not mention that. Also, it’s very likely that if they didn’t mention it then the individual likely isn’t a violent sex offender. Not justifying it, but individuals with disabilities are especially prone to ending up on sex offender registries for inappropriate social behavior as opposed to actual sex offenses. For example, I’ve taken care of people (men and women) who were “sex offenders” because they derobed (started taking off their clothes) in public because they were experiencing sensory overlord/stress and derobing was their internalized coping mechanism. It’s not a healthy coping mechanism in public, but they couldn’t differentiate. All of a sudden they are on a sex offender registry. Just using that as an example. In the U.S. you could find out why an individual might be a labeled a “sex offender”, in that individuals service plan (ISP). I don’t know if Australia has something similar.

  8. It’s in no way comfortable but unfortunately as someone who also works in healthcare and has worked in similar environments it’s the nature of it. Uncomfortable and unkind to ask you when obviously there are issues with it? Yes! But not illegal to not tell you.

  9. Nope. that being said, you can refuse. However, they would be within their rights to fire you for refusing. Sorry.

  10. I don’t know about the laws in Australia, but you should definitely let your employer know that you are uncomfortable working in the same environment as a registered sex offender. He may have the legal authority to not have to notify you, but you, as a worker, should have the right to voice your concern in a civil manner. Best of luck to you.

  11. It’s not illegal, no. People have been put on those lists for urinating in public. Most have done something like the lists suggest.

    Remember, you are in charge and they can not force you to work anywhere you are not comfortable!

  12. Illegal or not, I can’t tell.

    But that was full on evil from your employer. Leave that job if you can.

  13. No it actually would’ve been illegal if they had told you, they’re not allowed to share personal histories of clients. At least that’s how it is in my state, idk about yours.

    Which sucks because that’s a massive safety issue, but there’s also people on the register for pissing in the wrong place at the wrong time so it could be nothing also.

    Stay safe.

    Edit: Im wrong, OPs employer wouldn’t have broken any laws by informing them of the sec offender in the home, my mistake. Had my googlings wrong.

  14. Illegal or not, I’d hope that an employer would vet clients and look for this stuff. How they handle you declining this is going to say a lot about them.

  15. It’s not illegal, but I would have a chat with your management about not being tasked like this, especially without a suitable support person with you. If this does not get you a satisfactory outcome, talk to the union or the relevant WHS body in your state (e.g. WorkSafe Victoria)

  16. What was his offense exactly? Is he a violent predatory creep? A pedophile groomer?

    Or is it one of those situations where he was a horny kid having consensual sex with his then-GF, and both the girl’s parents and the local prosecutor hung him out to dry?

  17. It’s not illegal. Do you think the situation would be different with a murderer? or a thief? Just do your job if your uncomfortable bring some kind of protection. Pepper spray, taser etc. If something does happen you you’ll have apt recourse to remove yourself and get ahold of authorities. Chances are that if the guy needs home health you won’t have to worry.

  18. Do sex offender lists tell what specific sex crime it was? Such as if the guy was drunk and peed in an alley, vs if he raped and murdered a three-year-old?

  19. Working with the disabled isn’t a job everyone can or should do. I don’t know the individual you are referencing, his abilities, his awareness, etc. Disabilities can create people with impulse control issues that can be very dangerous. That doesn’t mean they are a horrible person that doesn’t need care… please people remember the disabled sex offenders are not all like your neighborhood pervert or aggressive rapist, they are disabled. If they qualify to live in a home that supports disabled people, they can be put on a sex offender list but they still have to be taken care of. That is, unless you think that a sex offense is a sex offense and they should just be left to rot and die. For me..a fully abled person who is a sex offender, go ahead rot and die. But I need more than “disabled” to say that about this guy, because his disability may be the problem.

    I took care of a disabled guy who was a sex offender. His crime is that his mind is that of about a 15 yr old. So when he was 25 and being too pushy talking to a teenage girl at the mall her parents took exception and called the police. They had the right to do that, of course, for harassment. That doesn’t mean he’s dangerous, or will attack everyone.

    I also worked with someone who was the sweetest guy ever, but if you walked in the house with coffee he’d stab you for it. He’s dangerous. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t need someone to take care of him.

    The problem in the field is that it doesn’t pay enough for what we do. That means we don’t have enough workers. So we don’t have enough employees to only put big men in a house. We are taught physical management techniques, we work in groups, we follow the rules that are based on how this guy acts and what he needs. Can it still be dangerous? Absolutely. Does it still need to be done? Absolutely. But it doesn’t need to be done by you if you feel unsafe, and no one should judge you for that.

  20. So sex offenders don’t need care. Got it we only nurse nice people. It is your choice I don’t know why I felt it’s not right, so no excon should receive home health? Broad stokes I guess

  21. No its not Illegal. Why would it be? Your employer doesn’t have to tell you , they arent the sex offender. The customer is. The customer is the one that has to let you know.

  22. Hey i think it’s super wrong that your employer wouldn’t disclose that information with you, or would be in their files.
    I’m in Canada and work at a LTC home, things like that are included in resident files upon admission. While different because house care vs living there care, I’m not allowed to refuse care to any resident or patient regardless of how I feel towards them, we have quite a few convicted pedophiles. I’d check with your laws to see is health care workers are able or unable to turn down jobs/patients. Maybe talk about your concerns with an employer and try to get a partner, or a different solution! All the best!

  23. I did home health for a month and in the orientation they straight up said that if you get groped or whatever you can refuse to work with that client again but you’ll be less likely to get another client after because you’re unreliable. Fuck home health.

  24. They may be under no obligation to check the registry but I am very glad you were smart enough to do so. It probably should be an industry standard maybe you can be a part o making I part of SOP.

  25. There should be a service plan for each individual living there, and you should be required to read each one prior to being allowed to work there. Something like that would be mentioned.

  26. When I did home health it was really common for older men to specifically request that they only be sent female caregivers. They were always gross and intolerable and it was obvious why their families weren’t willing to help them

  27. Sounds like if you’re so picky you should switch to a career where you don’t have to visit people’s home.

    Where’s the line? SO can’t have electricians come fix their outlet? Home Depot cannot deliver to SO houses?

    What does you being 20F have anything to do with it now that we’ve achieved gender equality? Or does it only matter if it works in your favor? Would you send a male for the overnight shift instead? What if the SO is into men? So many issues with your statement.