An employee of a Illinois nursing home is suing her former boss, alleging she was fired because a resident told her he had been mistreated and she reported the incident. So reports TheChicagoTribune.
Juana Walsh, who worked as a certified nursing assistant for Hearthstone Communities, is suing to get her job back, two-times back pay and more than $75,000 in damages. She was fired Nov. 30, 2016. The lawsuit alleges that Hearthstone ran afoul of the Illinois Whistleblower Act. A Hearthstone representative could not be reached for comment when the story went to press in December.
A patient told Walsh he was “very afraid of” a male nursing assistant and claimed that the assistant “treated (him) very badly,” according to the suit. The patient also said he did not feel safe at the nursing facility, the suit notes. Walsh said she reported what the patient told her to the nurse in charge, and to the human resources director the following day after she learned no one spoke with the patient.
The patient also had told a social worker what she told Walsh while Walsh was present. Walsh was asked to write a report, according to the suit.
But, the HR director told Walsh the patient’s claims would not be reported because they did not believe him and later “alleged (Walsh) coached” the patient on what to tell the social worker, the suit notes. “They yell at her, call her a liar, drag her through the mud…,” says Jim Harrison, Walsh’s attorney. “They accused her of stealing his private information, violating privacy rights by sharing information with his (family). They accused her of stealing the pencil she used to write up the report.”