Things You Should Know

By: Larry Alan Katz, Silver & Katz – Legal Representatives for MCRNA

All members of the MCRNA are Registered Nurses. That is your job and you should not be required to attempt to learn or apprise yourself of all the issues and items that constantly confront Monterey County employees. I have been asked to write a column on issues and items that you as members of the MCRNA and employees of the County should know as you focus your energies on performing your job. Periodically, I will update this section of the website to pass on information the MCRNA is currently dealing with on behalf of your interests.

Since forming the Association, the first point that needs to be addressed is the concept of “full representation”. I have discovered that many members do not understand when they should contact their legal representative. It is critical that when contacted by a superior for questioning that could potentially lead to some disciplinary action that you advise the supervisor you want to be afforded the right to representation. Already, I have had too many nurses contact me after they have responded to what may amount to an interrogation regarding their performance or activities.

As members of the MCRNA you have the right to an attorney to be present at any questioning that may be the basis for potential disciplinary action. If your superior just casually asks in general what happened that is different than being questioned in more detail about your actions. When that happens do not succumb to pressure some feel when a supervisor indicates that they need to talk to you “now.” Simply, explain that as an employee you have a right to representation and you are requesting that your attorney be present for the investigation.

During the investigation we will always direct our clients to tell the truth, but we want to ensure that their account is clear and understandable. With that being said, it is much easier for us to assist an employee in formulating their thoughts, to best describe their actions, at the beginning of an investigation rather than after the decision to discipline has already been finalized. Once contacted, we will arrange to meet the employee prior to the interview and go over the entire matter before answering any questions. This allows the employee to feel more comfortable and better assures that their version of the events are properly clarified.

We, as your representatives, are there to help you. If you have questions at any time please call our office (408) 456-5076; my cell (408) 592-2905 or e-mail me at lakatz@charter.net.

 

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