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Woman suing over Empire Builder rape case

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Which leaves me wondering how men will go about pursuing women in a socially acceptable manner in the future. Perhaps women will eventually become the primary romantic pursuers if the new social contract begins to favor their interests over time.

 

 

 

 

This, exactly..

 

All the women I dated including the one who became my wife, I all met in social situations, at parties, dances and such.

 

These days a lot of dating appears to be on the internet. At least we see lots of advertising by dating agencies and I know several people who went down that path.

 

Maybe this is a result of men being more apprehensive about going up to and making small talk with a woman, for fear of it being considered harrasment.

 

 

My mind boggles at this, in the context of this thread about a violent rape committed by an Amtrak employee whose job specifically includes ensuriing the safety of the passenger who became his victim. (I'm talking to cirdan, here, not DA, whose quote he cherry-picked from a more thoughtful paragraph.)

 

Can we perhaps agree that rape isn't at all akin to even the most inept or inappropriate "small talk?"

 

Coming back to the original subject of this thread: Is there any reason why Amtrak could not have responded to the arbitration's order to re-hire this employee by assigning the employee some sort of work that didn't include direct responsibility for passenger safety?

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That would appear to make sense, but without reading the actual decision and order, I certainly can't say.

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Which leaves me wondering how men will go about pursuing women in a socially acceptable manner in the future. Perhaps women will eventually become the primary romantic pursuers if the new social contract begins to favor their interests over time.

 

 

 

 

This, exactly..

 

All the women I dated including the one who became my wife, I all met in social situations, at parties, dances and such.

 

These days a lot of dating appears to be on the internet. At least we see lots of advertising by dating agencies and I know several people who went down that path.

 

Maybe this is a result of men being more apprehensive about going up to and making small talk with a woman, for fear of it being considered harrasment.

 

 

My mind boggles at this, in the context of this thread about a violent rape committed by an Amtrak employee whose job specifically includes ensuriing the safety of the passenger who became his victim. (I'm talking to cirdan, here, not DA, whose quote he cherry-picked from a more thoughtful paragraph.)

 

Can we perhaps agree that rape isn't at all akin to even the most inept or inappropriate "small talk?"

 

 

 

 

i was never suggesting that.

 

I was merely responding to a point raised by another poster, that had nothing to do with the original topic of the thread.

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Coming back to the original subject of this thread: Is there any reason why Amtrak could not have responded to the arbitration's order to re-hire this employee by assigning the employee some sort of work that didn't include direct responsibility for passenger safety?

 

 

As previously discussed:

 

 

 

Based on what is being said about about the laws protecting employees, I think there needs to be a provision that keeps criminals from endangering the public. No woman, child, or man needs to be concerned about the people who are working around them, who are trusted because they work for the company. In this case, the union twice, supported successfully, an employee who is a sexual predator. Question: If Amtrak was required to rehire this person, could they have placed him in a non-public position or were they required to place him in OBS?

 

It would depend on the ruling of the PLB. If they impose limitations, you would have to follow them. However, if the PLB reinstated them in all capacities, the company would have no choice but to reinstate them in all capacities since this is a binding decision. Once they are back, they must be treated evenly, fairly and with consistency, otherwise the company runs the risk of being cited for retaliation or harassment which is typically a provision of reinstatement.

 

 

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Coming back to the original subject of this thread: Is there any reason why Amtrak could not have responded to the arbitration's order to re-hire this employee by assigning the employee some sort of work that didn't include direct responsibility for passenger safety?

 

As previously discussed:

 

 

Based on what is being said about about the laws protecting employees, I think there needs to be a provision that keeps criminals from endangering the public. No woman, child, or man needs to be concerned about the people who are working around them, who are trusted because they work for the company. In this case, the union twice, supported successfully, an employee who is a sexual predator. Question: If Amtrak was required to rehire this person, could they have placed him in a non-public position or were they required to place him in OBS?

It would depend on the ruling of the PLB. If they impose limitations, you would have to follow them. However, if the PLB reinstated them in all capacities, the company would have no choice but to reinstate them in all capacities since this is a binding decision. Once they are back, they must be treated evenly, fairly and with consistency, otherwise the company runs the risk of being cited for retaliation or harassment which is typically a provision of reinstatement.

 

So it's still Amtrak's fault for not having an airtight case against him. Shouldn't have lost arbitration.

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I’m not sure any of us have enough facts to make that judgement.

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Coming back to the original subject of this thread: Is there any reason why Amtrak could not have responded to the arbitration's order to re-hire this employee by assigning the employee some sort of work that didn't include direct responsibility for passenger safety?

 

 

As previously discussed:

 

 

 

Based on what is being said about about the laws protecting employees, I think there needs to be a provision that keeps criminals from endangering the public. No woman, child, or man needs to be concerned about the people who are working around them, who are trusted because they work for the company. In this case, the union twice, supported successfully, an employee who is a sexual predator. Question: If Amtrak was required to rehire this person, could they have placed him in a non-public position or were they required to place him in OBS?

 

It would depend on the ruling of the PLB. If they impose limitations, you would have to follow them. However, if the PLB reinstated them in all capacities, the company would have no choice but to reinstate them in all capacities since this is a binding decision. Once they are back, they must be treated evenly, fairly and with consistency, otherwise the company runs the risk of being cited for retaliation or harassment which is typically a provision of reinstatement.

 

 

 

 

According to the newspaper article that started this thread, the decision was that firing him was "too severe" a punishment. It doesn't say whether he had to be reinstated in his former job and no other.

 

The article DOES detail a troubling work history that should have precluded him working as a sleeping car attendant:

 

"Michael George, the victim's Great Falls attorney, alleges Amtrak had records of Pinner's employee misconduct from 2000, specifically incidents of hostility against white women, when he told a female co-worker, "You're the typical garden variety type, and that's a typical Anglo-Saxon trait," and on the same day told another, "I have no trouble strangling a white woman."

Two years later, another complaint was filed against Pinner for violating Amtrak's personal conduct, honesty and safety policies. Court records don't include any specifics about the violation, but Pinner was dismissed as a result of the complaint, although he was reinstated five months later, according to court documents.

And in 2006, the train company launched a "formal investigation" into Pinner for reportedly selling pornography while on the job. The company reportedly learned about Pinner's endeavors when he told a van driver he was selling X-rated adult videos, and handed the driver a bag of them.

Court documents filed by Amtrak attorneys state the company did act on Pinner's misconduct, and actually terminated him in 2006. Pinner, backed by his union, appealed his firing and a binding Board determined the discipline was too severe. Pinner was again reinstated and worked with the train company until Oct. 1, 2015,

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We should thank our stars that the August Labor Board did not consider firing to be too severe for rape on the job I suppose. :ph34r:

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As opposed to rape @ Mar Largo or 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue so to speak.🤔

Edited by Bob Dylan

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As opposed to rape @ Mar Largo or 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue so to speak.

Labor Board rules on those too? Their reach seems to be amazing :unsure:

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Amtrak absolutely should have sued in court to overturn the first and second Labor Board ruling reinstating the rapist. Board rulings are not binding if they are contrary to law, and in this case they were contrary to law. But if I remember my procedure correctly, Amtrak would have to sue the Board to prove it.

Edited by neroden

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So it's still Amtrak's fault for not having an airtight case against him. Shouldn't have lost arbitration

 

\

 

According to the newspaper article that started this thread, the decision was that firing him was "too severe" a punishment. It doesn't say whether he had to be reinstated in his former job and no other.

The article DOES detail a troubling work history that should have precluded him working as a sleeping car attendant:

 

"Michael George, the victim's Great Falls attorney, alleges Amtrak had records of Pinner's employee misconduct from 2000, specifically incidents of hostility against white women, when he told a female co-worker, "You're the typical garden variety type, and that's a typical Anglo-Saxon trait," and on the same day told another, "I have no trouble strangling a white woman."

Two years later, another complaint was filed against Pinner for violating Amtrak's personal conduct, honesty and safety policies. Court records don't include any specifics about the violation, but Pinner was dismissed as a result of the complaint, although he was reinstated five months later, according to court documents.

And in 2006, the train company launched a "formal investigation" into Pinner for reportedly selling pornography while on the job. The company reportedly learned about Pinner's endeavors when he told a van driver he was selling X-rated adult videos, and handed the driver a bag of them.

Court documents filed by Amtrak attorneys state the company did act on Pinner's misconduct, and actually terminated him in 2006. Pinner, backed by his union, appealed his firing and a binding Board determined the discipline was too severe. Pinner was again reinstated and worked with the train company until Oct. 1, 2015,

 

 

 

Ventureforth,

 

In the eyes of the public law board, You can win the arbitration but that doesn't mean the discipline assessed was warranted or reasonable.

 

Tricia,

 

Unless you or the press have the ACTUAL ruling, you won't know. However, if the PLB ruling indicates the punishment was too severe, that is a tell tale sign he was reinstated in all capacities.

 

 

Amtrak absolutely should have sued in court to overturn the first and second Labor Board ruling reinstating the rapist. Board rulings are not binding if they are contrary to law, and in this case they were contrary to law. But if I remember my procedure correctly, Amtrak would have to sue the Board to prove it.

 

I'm still looking for basis. Remember, after the first and second violation, he wasn't a rapist. He was a purveyor of porn (which is legal unless you are selling it minors. As such, this becomes a code of conduct violation,) and a person who is obviously prejudiced (which is another code of conduct violation.) There are many levels of code of conduct violation and circumstances dictate whether it may lead to termination. It happens, but not all of the time.

 

Typically, the PLB looks at the circumstances, patterns and the actual incident based upon rules at the time. Another mind boggling ruling involved an injured employee who fell on an engine trying to secure a door that opened at track speed. The employee was charged with failing to maintain a braced position and secure handhold. The union protested and took the PLB to the engine and asked them to look at the scene. After observing the engine, the PLB ruled that there was no way possible for the employee to comply with the rule since there is no way to maintain a secure handhold or maintain a braced position based on the engine design. Therefore, the employee clearly couldn't comply with the rule since it was not possible. That means that the employee didn't comply with the rule and is guilty. Award for the company! That is like the company writing a rule saying that you must flap your arms and fly to cross tracks and charging you with a violation when you can't since it isn't possible. As such, that ruling established a pattern of awards in that department and they are industry patterns...not individual railroad patterns.

 

What is the railroad pattern for termination regarding code of conduct violations? That is what they look at.

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Unless you or the press have the ACTUAL ruling, you won't know. However, if the PLB ruling indicates the punishment was too severe, that is a tell tale sign he was reinstated in all capacities.

Why should a ruling that a punishment is "too severe" preclude any re-assignment to duties where this man's history of "code of conduct violations" would be less of customer-relations and potential security problem?

Edited by tricia

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Unless you or the press have the ACTUAL ruling, you won't know. However, if the PLB ruling indicates the punishment was too severe, that is a tell tale sign he was reinstated in all capacities.

Why should a ruling that a punishment is "too severe" preclude any re-assignment to duties where this man's history of "code of conduct violations" would be less of customer-relations and potential security problem?

 

 

 

When you're reinstated in all capacities, you are returned to your previous craft unless otherwise directed. If they go to that length of limiting your return, that typically means that termination was warranted and they wouldn't even bring you back.

 

Additionally, they may have looked at the man's history and decided none of his infractions involved actual infractions. Additionally, there may have even been mitigating circumstances regarding his comments that we are not privy to but the public law board was. An example of this is when a young conductor was holding onto the ledge of a mail car. Allow me to post a picture:

 

22_2011100106_mhc.jpg

 

You're basically standing on a little ledge, with your arm wrapped a that hoop. Since radios weren't prevalent, you passed hand signals with a lantern. Long story short is why this conductor was being shoved, he passed a signal to slow down. the move didn't slow down. he passed a signal to stop. The move didn't stop or slow down. Wrapped around the side of the equipment, this young conductor sees the engineer is looking at the opposite side of the engineer and quickly realized the engineer is running his mouth instead of paying attention. The lantern was thrown (which was the emergency stop signal at the time and the engineer dumped the move into emergency. However, the move was still doing about 13 mph less than a car length away. The young conductor had to think about how he could keep from being injured. the options were jump from that height or ride out the move and hope the drawbars absorbed most of the speed because a collision was imminent. The decision was made to ride out the movement. After the collision, the now ANGRY young conductor , who had swirling memories of asking "hey what happens if the engineer doesn't respond to hand signals and we don't have back up hoses and they said don't worry about it" picked up the lantern, approached the engineer and despite the fact this person was at least three times the conductor's size, threw the lantern at his head.

 

That seems like a code of conduct violation and violence in the work place.

 

However, when every looked at the case, they saw just how close to a disaster this was for the young conductor. There was serious damage to the equipment but the young conductor only had bruises and a few strains. So, they looked at the case and decided mitigating circumstances warranted less discipline. However, most people weren't aware of the details..only, young conductor attacks senior engineer.

 

That young conductor moved on to other things and never really had other (serious) issues. Would you have fired that conductor Tricia since an act of violence was committed? Would you have said they can't provide customer service because of an incident between two employees?

 

Maybe you would have.

 

Other wouldn't have.

 

That is why there is a neutral board to look at the totality of the incidents. You and I don't have the totality of any of this. We don't even have the ruling so there may be much more to this. Hell, it could be a lot worse.

 

We don't know.

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We don't know.

... yet we don't hesitate to cast judgement.

 

Should be the AU motto.

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We DO know that this man was fired for multiple "code of conduct" violations, including the delivery of racist, sexist slurs on the job, an unspecified violation of "Amtrak's personal conduct, honesty and safety policies," AND selling porn on the job.

 

We also DO know that after Amtrak rehired him and allowed him to work as a sleeping car attendant, he violently raped a passenger.

 

I'm pretty confident in my judgment that Amtrak should not, after MULTIPLE incidents that demonstrated his unfitness for such a security-sensitive position, have allowed this man to serve as a sleeping car attendant. We all make judgments, every day, without the "totality of the evidence." I think ThirdRail is proposing an unreasonable standard for this.

 

I'm also really, really uncomfortable that Amtrak's public response to all of this has been primarily to cover its butt, rather than to fix its employee standards to ensure that they don't hire or retain as an SCA anyone who's got at least three incidents of on-the-job personal conduct violations on his record.

 

And I find it hard to believe that Amtrak had absolutely no alternative but to reinstate this guy as an SCA and walk away from any responsiblity for his conduct. If that's the case, maybe we should all reconsider whether it's safe to be traveling in sleeping cars.

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I agree that IMHO Thirdrail is proposing an unreasonable standard, but then again, being unreasonable is not unusual here or on many other boards. And mind you this is just my opinion and not an universal statement of the universal truth or anything like that. OTOH, Thirdrail does correctly identify what Amtrak's primary motivation is, and it is far from protecting its customers, as many would suspect from the way this was handled.

 

While one can make a convoluted technical argument that Amtrak did just perfectly well in this entire episode, and behaved exactly as any upstanding company should, the fact remains that the overall system is deeply broken and needs fixing. if I am going to be unreasonable, I will tend to lean in this direction.

Edited by jis

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I'm pretty confident in my judgment that Amtrak should not, after MULTIPLE incidents that demonstrated his unfitness for such a security-sensitive position, have allowed this man to serve as a sleeping car attendant. We all make judgments, every day, without the "totality of the evidence." I think ThirdRail is proposing an unreasonable standard for this.

 

 

 

It isn't my standard and it isn't my judgement, nor is it yours Tricia. That is the decision of the Public LAW board. It is a LAW, Tricia that governs the airline and railroad industries. I don't like a lot of things that laws protect but if the LAW decides this is the way it is going to be handled, then you should lobby to overturn the law. Until then, if the PLB (empowered by law) states someone has to return, that is what has to be done. Think of it as someone who seems guilty of murdering two people but they are acquitted. If they're free to go, it doesn't really matter what you think or what the press stated. They are free and the law (which I listed above) clearly states they must be returned in the time period agreed to.

 

A man injured over 100 people after colliding with a train and was fired...after already being fired for a drug charge (which technically, the federal law on this called for a nine month revocation of certification) and the LAW stated that he must be returned . I found that appalling too. I thought, "Wow, he's free to injure more people. What will it take? Death?" However, I wasn't at the hearing nor was I privy to the evidence presented. The PLB ruled it was his first operational rule violation and he must be returned. Again, it is rare that someone is rehired in a limited capacity since if that is the case, they would typically uphold the termination.

 

Jis, I never said anything was handled well nor did I set or propose a standard at all. I never said much other than to explain how the SYSTEM works (or doesn't) by presenting some of the wacky PLBs decisions That's because people in the thread ASKED. There are procedures and rules to be followed. If you don't like it or believe it, that is entirely on you. But, now you have the basics of procedures.

Edited by Thirdrail7

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Thirdrail, I realized that eventually. Sometimes I am pretty slow as you might have noticed. I generally agree with your position. I think you and I agree that the whole thing was handled pretty poorly. The flow of events may have been caused by the laws the way they are and as you said everyone trying to cover their butts first, and indeed things may be setup to remove all reasonable choice of action - which of course begs the question why such Boards cannot be fired and replaced by computers..

 

Unfortunately it is these sorts of things that fairly or not, give a bad name ti unions and labor laws.

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