(Edit: 2/3/2017 — I’m posting this from drafts. I had intended to add more to this, but as I started it around New Years, and it’s not been edited for weeks, I think it’s time to just throw it out there.)
So much is happening. I don’t even know where to start. In my last entry, I spoke about the company’s offer to relocate me. They formally invited me to apply and accept the same job, but in Atlanta. As politely as I could, I declined the position.
I reiterated my reasoning. I wanted them to know why I wasn’t willing to move to Atlanta. I wanted them to know that I’m not trying to be difficult. I cited the following:
- Atlanta is (arguably) no better than Louisville for a transgender woman. Much like Louisville, Atlanta is a liberal enclave within a very conservative state. The majority of people in the state are voting for people who want to make my public existence illegal. Statistically speaking, there would be any number of these people working along side me.
- If I went there, I would be going stealth. I wouldn’t be disclosing my trans status to anyone in the building. However, my ability to be stealth would be totally dependent on management being able to keep my personal business private. Based on my experience with local management, I don’t see how that’s possible.
- A “voluntary” relocation would require me to stay in that position for 24 months. I asked, rhetorically, “What happens when this starts all over again?” I’d be trapped.
- Atlanta has a higher cost of living, but my rate of pay would be the same.
- The company has no obligation to provide any relocation budget.
There’s other reasons too. Like the fact that going further into the deep south to get away from discrimination seems ludicrous. The company asked me where I wanted to go, and that short list did not include any of the South East states. I felt like I was better off staying where I was, because at least I knew what to expect.
The impression that I got from the conference call I had on Tuesday was that the company took my decline as a rebuff. I say that because all of the sudden, they’re talking about my 2015 year-end performance and the not yet finalized 2016 year-end data. My argument was that my performance was impacted by the harassment throughout 2015 and up until April of 2016. I missed half of April, all of May, and the majority of June. They said that if I don’t accept the job in Atlanta that I may not be able to be considered for other positions within the company because of my performance numbers. This is not unlike what I was told in 2015. That because I had discipline in my file for performance, I couldn’t transfer. At this point, I’ve been able to get all active discipline out of my personnel file. Now the company comes up with a new excuse.
What the company doesn’t seem to understand is that you can’t use my workplace performance results as a qualifier for allowing or disallowing harassment. That is, I’m an employee and they have an obligation to protect all employees. Regardless of their metrics. The conversation was very disheartening. I’m looking into pursuing other external avenues in which I might be able to gain the company’s captive attention. Going to the media or filing an actual lawsuit. I’m waiting on some responses on some leads I contacted.