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'Apple' fires Employee for Volunteering for Haiti Relief


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#1 shadylane

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 07:49 PM

Taken from Facebook page. This is the same store that fired me when I took three days off for my uncle's funeral. I was given permission and then they went back on there word saying that they made a "mistake" and I will have to pay for it. Please join the cause and let it be known that Apple isn't as friendly when it comes to there employees!


"On January 23rd, Apple fired one of it's 'MacGeniuses' after he returned home from a week of Volunteering with the UN to help the people of Haiti. The reason? The employee (Mr. Jeremy A. Holt) did not follow the Company Policy stating that he 'call in sick' for every day that he was absent. Even though he sent out an email saying that he'd be out for 6 days without communication.

Let's band together and ask the people at Apple this:: What matters more- Company Policy, or SAVING LIVES?!"

http://www.facebook....id=289878067572

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UPDATE 1-24-10
Letter from Jeremy
A Note from Jeremy Holt
Hey everyone, Thank you so much for all of your support and enthusiasm to get Apple to change some of their ways. I wanted to let you know (in brief) how this group came to be. Last week I was presented a time-sensitive opportunity to fly to Santiago in the Dominic...an Republic as part of a volunteer relief group, assisting in sending aid to Haiti. I was working with a volunteer group that was being co-sponsored by Airline Ambassadors, an N.G.O. program working in conjunction with the airlines, as well as the United Nations. I followed the standard procedure for calling out of work at exactly 4:47am on January 16th, the same hour that I was notified that I was eligible to participate in the program. I was gone for five days. As of today, January 23, 2010, I have been terminated by Apple. I was told because I didn't follow protocol, which requires that I call out for each day that I am absent, that three "no call/no shows", is grounds for termination. I thought that explaining my whereabouts for this past five days would have been sufficient, clearly it was not. I want to be clear that I am not outraged that I was fired. I am just deeply saddened that Apple lacks the compassion and empathy when it came to reviewing my employment in the context of my situation. I acknowledge and accept that I need to be held accountable for leaving work so abruptly, but to not let me make it up to them is harsh. In a nutshell, I was fired for a technicality, my work in Santiago helping send aid to Haiti, irrelevant. I've sent an email to Steve Jobs about this, simply informing him of what has transpired. My family are the ones that are outraged and my brother has managed to contact CNN, who are going to call me tomorrow to follow up in more detail. I hope this email finds you all well. Best, Jeremy Holt.

UPDATE:1-25-10
A word from his brother on just how crucial his work was in this service to haiti.

"I just want to let you know that Jeremy did more than "bring toiletries and mingling with the (disadvantaged) locals". Quite the contrary in fact. BECAUSE of his extension computer knowledge, he was asked by Airline Ambassadors and the UN to take charge to setup up communication command centers in order to coordinate planes to reach Haitian refugees. Prior to his arrival, the aide that was available was NOT able to be delivered.

His services there were invaluable since NOBODY there had any technical computer knowledge.

And JUST because Apple has a "huge PR machine", does that mean that they can NEVER be at fault??"

UPDATE: 1-25-10
Seems like apple has heard Jeremy!! YAY!!!!

"Thanks everyone for the support and encouragement! I am thrilled to announce- all of your emails have reached the folks at Apple! Ron Johnson of Apple has contacted us personally to acknowledge that the situation could have been handled much better and has been quite apologetic. He (and the rest of Apple) are very keen... to do what needs to be done to MAKE THIS RIGHT. Thank you everyone for your support and for your emails to Apple. We are hopeful that a resolution to this whole mess can be found."

Edited by shadylane, 25 January 2010 - 08:01 AM.

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#2 camoor

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 08:01 PM

I support you man but I don't see this going anywhere. The problem is that Apple isn't a brand, it's a cult.

They could be worshipping Satan at executive headquarters and tomorrow one of the faithful would make an app for that.

#3 shadylane

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 08:09 PM

It might not but it doesn't hurt to try! here is an update from Jeremy!

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#4 Chuplayer

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 11:36 PM

Fuck Apple. Seriously. This guy's a hero.
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#5 RedvsBlue

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Posted 24 January 2010 - 11:47 PM

The thread title is a little misleading. Something along the lines of "Apple fires Employee for failing to call in while volunteering in Haiti" might be a little closer.

He was supposed to call in every day and yet he sent 1 email instead?

I certainly commend him for going to Haiti to help out but he didn't take care of his responsibility of informing them why he wouldn't be into work for almost a week straight.
Did he deserve to get fired? No
Was he a completely innocent victim in his firing? No

#6 lokizz

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 12:31 AM

is there any proof that the guy didnt have prior issues with missing days at work or being late? yeah its cool he wanted to help but a job is a job.

#7 neocisco

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 12:37 AM

I support you man but I don't see this going anywhere. The problem is that Apple isn't a brand, it's a cult.

They could be worshipping Satan at executive headquarters and tomorrow one of the faithful would make an app for that.


They already worship Steve Jobs. Close enough.

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#8 blaked569

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 12:40 AM

is there any proof that the guy didnt have prior issues with missing days at work or being late? yeah its cool he wanted to help but a job is a job.


forealz. imagine if this happened at a hospital, and a doctor was like "Peace out homes! I'm gonna be gone for two weeks to help people in Haiti!" Well jesus christ, what about your patients here?!

#9 ammowasted

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 12:54 AM

forealz. imagine if this happened at a hospital, and a doctor was like "Peace out homes! I'm gonna be gone for two weeks to help people in Haiti!" Well jesus christ, what about your patients here?!

Because being a doctor is SO similar to working at an Apple Store.

#10 caltab

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 01:10 AM

Because being a doctor is SO similar to working at an Apple Store.


They both have the same responsibility and accountability to their employer. There are tragedies all over the world everyday(most not publicized like this one). If people could just abandon their responsibility for a week whenever they felt like for an "opportunity" employers would face a lot of staffing problems. While I'm sympathetic to the cause, you can't just abandon your responsibilities for 5 days with minimal notice and expect no repercussions. Apple did nothing wrong on this one IMO. There are countless worthy volunteering opportunities throughout America and the rest of the world, an employee shouldn't expect to be able to just take 5 days of with no notice to contribute to one of them. This guy didn't have some valuable unique rare life saving talent like a trained rescue crew that would make his absence far more understandable.

Personally, I'm more sympathetic to the OP losing his job to attend his Uncle's funeral. I know a lot of companies only give permission for immediate family, but every family is different and people can be closer with their uncle then their father, ect.

Edited by caltab, 25 January 2010 - 01:29 AM.


#11 mis0

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 01:12 AM

The dude is a drama queen. Let him have his 15 minutes of fame.

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#12 crunchb3rry

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 02:00 AM

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#13 LordKefka06

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 06:11 AM

Exactly agree with caltab.

#14 Friend of Sonic

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 06:44 AM

But, it sounds like he was fired because he didn't call in each day, not that he decided to up and leave all of a sudden to help in Haiti. I think there's a big difference between the two. It's understandable if Apple wants to tell him, "Well, you can't leave on such short notice, if you do, you're fired." But it sounds like if he called them he'd still have a job.

Day #4 "Hi... I'm still in Haiti. Like my email said. Just letting you know. Well, I'll call you tomorrow. Bye."

Come on. That's just dumb. No one's gonna find the fucking time to call from Haiti when you're pulling people from the rubble. That's 24/7, man.
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#15 Koggit

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 06:50 AM

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#16 jngx80

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 07:13 AM

But, it sounds like he was fired because he didn't call in each day, not that he decided to up and leave all of a sudden to help in Haiti. I think there's a big difference between the two. It's understandable if Apple wants to tell him, "Well, you can't leave on such short notice, if you do, you're fired." But it sounds like if he called them he'd still have a job.

Day #4 "Hi... I'm still in Haiti. Like my email said. Just letting you know. Well, I'll call you tomorrow. Bye."

Come on. That's just dumb. No one's gonna find the fucking time to call from Haiti when you're pulling people from the rubble. That's 24/7, man.


That's how I read it too, at first. But he needs to clarify some things. Is it really policy that he needs to report in everyday he's out? That would be a weird ass policy. From Jeremy's post it sounds more like he left a message saying he'd be out but didn't give a return date. If that's the case the employer is in the right for firing him.

Edit: the facebook post says he told them he'd be gone for 6 days. Not sure what to believe. three no calls usually means termination at any company - no calls means you didn't show up for work or tell your employer you'd be gone before hand.

#17 shadylane

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 08:00 AM

Two more updates!. I understand where you guys are coming from and Jeremy does too. Here are some more answers to people wondering what exactly was his doing out there?

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#18 sendme

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 10:42 AM

I don't think they should have let the guy go however did he even work out something with them? I didn't read all of it but from what I am getting out of it is that he just sent an email saying he would be out for them days and why. Policy says he has to call in everyday. My work is the same 3 no call no shows in they year and I am let go 2 in a row and they take it that I quit. No way is he going to be calling in everyday but he could have tried to work somethign out.
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#19 lokizz

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 05:34 PM

But, it sounds like he was fired because he didn't call in each day, not that he decided to up and leave all of a sudden to help in Haiti. I think there's a big difference between the two. It's understandable if Apple wants to tell him, "Well, you can't leave on such short notice, if you do, you're fired." But it sounds like if he called them he'd still have a job.

Day #4 "Hi... I'm still in Haiti. Like my email said. Just letting you know. Well, I'll call you tomorrow. Bye."

Come on. That's just dumb. No one's gonna find the fucking time to call from Haiti when you're pulling people from the rubble. That's 24/7, man.


they may have wanted him to call so they know he was still there in haiti and actually in haiti. they dont know if thats where he was really going or not plenty of people call in sick and go out somewhere else not to say he did but from their pov they need to know thats really where you are.

#20 crunchb3rry

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 07:28 PM

Most likely the daily call-ins was because that's the system Apple uses. So it's all logged correctly, and HR or the manager doesn't have to juggle that shit. No advance notice and having to fill a spot for 6 straight days is a royal pain in the ass for a manager, add to that the guy who isn't there just sent an e-mail and ignorantly assumed because he was playing hero in Haiti he'd get a free pass. If I take a week off to go fight crime, my job doesn't care. Apple could easily label what he did as job abandonment.

I think the funny part of the story is the guy works for Apple and doesn't own a cellphone that can work in Haiti.

#21 intoxicated662

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 08:04 PM

I suppose this would be "job abandonment" or they'll find a way to pin it to him and he will lose. Doing what he did is good and is out of his own choice of course, but don't do it when you're scheduled to work. Honestly, there are other ways to go about it. Ask for the week off, use vacation time, leave of abscence, talk to them first and let them know what your intentions are and all. Don't just get up and leave without consulting and expecting to be reprimanded for it.

#22 intoxicated662

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 08:06 PM

Funny how someone mentioned a few posts above that "Come on. That's just dumb. No one's gonna find the Fucking time to call from Haiti when you're pulling people from the rubble. That's 24/7, man." yet, he found time to send out an email. Oh the irony...

#23 Soodmeg

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 08:13 PM

I agree, anyone can find a noble cause to leave for a week. There are hundreds of national disasters that happen a year you really cant just leave for a week and expect your job to just understand why they have to fill your position for a undisclosed amount of time.

Lets be honest here, Haiti is going to be messed up for quite some time, why did this guy have to drop everything and vanish for a week? He couldnt request the next week off?

Just seems like he was a little too eager to play hero and didnt take the necessary steps before he left. Apple does have the right to fire this guy but I hope they dont.


EDIT: By the way I am interested in knowing if this guy even attempted to find a replacement for himself for the week? Or did he really just send a email and not show up for 6 days. I am sure Apple would have let him go if he had actually taken the time to go through the proper channels. Just sounds like he thought this cause was so noble they he could ignore all responsibility.

#24 62t

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 08:16 PM

looks like the facebook link is down?

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#25 JolietJake

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 09:24 PM

I thought Apple was the warm and fuzzy computer company and Microsoft was the cold, faceless corporation.

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#26 Lonestar9

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 09:39 PM

I thought Apple was the warm and fuzzy computer company and Microsoft was the cold, faceless corporation.


LOL..that about sums it up for me too...

#27 irideabike

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 09:40 PM

please change the title to: idiot doesn't go to work for a week and then cries about losing his job.

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#28 Friend of Sonic

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 09:49 PM

If I'm reading something wrong, it sounds like he got the okay to leave the six days. But neglected to follow the technicality of calling in each day to confirm that the plan for six days off was still ongoing. It just sounds excessive to fire him for not calling in when he was given permission to take the time off.

If that's not the case or I'm giving him too much benefit of the doubt, then that is my fault.
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#29 AK85

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 10:10 PM

any hiring is presumed to be "at will"; that is, the employer is free to discharge individuals "for good cause, or bad cause, or no cause at all," and the employee is equally free to quit, strike, or otherwise cease work.



http://en.wikipedia....will_employment

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#30 xycury

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Posted 25 January 2010 - 10:11 PM

The guy needed to follow protocol, and if the daily phonecall was in question, should have brought it up at the time. He didn't, thus not calling, thus leaving Apple a free "You're Fired" card.

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His 15 minutes need to stop before someone decides to do some stupid stuff.