When you get sick on the job, you expect your boss to be sympathetic. But that was far from the case for Danielle Duperreault, a young woman from Saskatoon, Canada. Her workplace illness had the opposite effect on her boss.
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Duperreault, who's severely allergic to many things, usually carries an epi pen with her. But she didn't have it one day last week while she was doing her shift at Urban Planet, a clothing store. (Her old one was expired; she hadn't yet refilled the Rx for a new one.) So when she came into contact with a bell pepper, she went into anaphylactic shock--her airways began to close, she felt faint, her fingers and toes went numb. But when she told a manager, the woman seemed unconcerned.
When one of her colleagues asked if she should call an ambulance, the manager kept on typing and just told Duperreault to let her know when she got to the hospital. Finally, a coworker drove her to the clinic where she got a shot of epinephrine that stopped her allergic reaction. From there she went to the hospital via ambulance. The doctors there told her if she'd waited 10 more minutes, she'd have died.
On her way to the hospital she got a text from her boss, firing her and the coworker who'd helped her.
Duperreault shared the text to let people know that allergies can be deadly--and to make a plea that all workplaces not only have an epi pen on hand but train their staff on how to use one. After all, as the young Canadian writes, "Who knows if a customer needs one in an emergency, or someone who doesn't know they have allergies and doesn't own an epi pen?"
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The clothing store company has since apologized, and is paying Duperreault's salary until she finds a new job. But the manager herself has stayed strangely mum.
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