A Letter to the Editor
I am a young person and I would like the opportunity to warn other young people out there about getting in job situations that will forever affect their lives.
I was employed by one of Nassau’s most esteemed Non Profit Organizations; I was hired to take my department to the next level; however I was scammed.
I was hired under a verbal agreement between myself and the Director General; she promised me a salary that wasn’t much but I accepted it because I too believed in the cause. However, on my first pay day the salary we had originally agreed on had drastically changed. For the worse.
Perhaps it was partially my fault because some time had passed and I never received a job letter or even a contract stating my duties and responsibilities. When I would ask, my requests were ignored. Any question about my salary or job description was met with indifference. I thought she made an error in telling me what the salary would be and was embarrassed to admit it.
Instead of admitting that she had made an error in the procedures of hiring me, the DG attempted to make me believe she had never told me that salary and that I was mistaken. I would have been understanding had the salary that she and I had agreed on was not readily accepted by her bosses and she relayed that back to me, but she didn’t and for this, I was not understanding.
She began a campaign to play mind games and insult my intelligence repeatedly. After I had put in writing the salary discrepancies to her, the original salary that we had a verbal agreement on had once again changed and according to her response to my letter, the salary should have been more than what I was receiving, but still less than what was originally promised. However, her reply was so poorly written to protect her that when I was cheated a second time, the letter could have been comprehended in either way. The letter made her appear confused, inept or deceitful, perhaps all three.
In any event, after I had raised the salary inaccuracy, I was completely disregarded as an employee and with this being my first permanent job since returning home from university, it completely changed my outlook on these types of organizations. The way in which I was treated and regarded went against the very same 7 Fundamental Principles of this Organization.
The Director General was no better as she constantly spoke about me to anyone that would listen, handled the affairs of my department behind my back with no communication to myself and even searched my desk on occasions!
Eventually, I was terminated under the premise that my “performance was lacking”, which was ironic as I never received a job letter stating what was expected of me in the first place, so how can that be measured?
I was thrown in the water and expected to swim and I did my best considering the environment I was in. Surely, having someone employ you and then fire you for “not performing” with no job letter goes against our labor laws. I stayed with the organization as long as I did out of a sense of moral duty, because she and I had an agreement and regardless if she didn’t keep her end of the agreement, she nor anyone else will never credibly say I didn’t keep mine.
Nevertheless it was a lesson learned and I urge young people to not allow themselves to be exploited by these organizations that operate on the premise of performing the greater good. I have found that their internal dealings with the well qualified and well meaning leaves a lot to be desired. Please insist that you get everything in writing and most of all, do not be fooled by a smiling face or the recognizable symbol of the organization because while the organization stands for something noble, the people running it may not.
If only I had been less trusting and more on my guard this experience would not be on my record. Beware.
A Very Irritated Youth