Please join us at a hearing to reinstate City of Raleigh employee Shirley Venable on Monday, July 13, 2015, at 10am, at the Wake County Superior Court, 316 Fayetteville Street, Raleigh. Wear a dark purple shirt if you can so her supporters will show up.
10 year veteran sanitation worker Shirley Venable was unjustly fired from her job as a sanitation truck driver in the City of Raleigh in September of 2011. Shirley had an excellent work record with year after year of “outstanding” job evaluations. She was one of the few females working in the Solid Waste Services Department, among whom there were many complaints of sexual harassment.
Photo Credit: http://www.blackactivistzine.org
In the days leading up to her termination, Shirley suffered a horrible domestic violence attack by her estranged husband where she was stabbed, beaten, and threatened with murder. She was taken to the hospital and treated for her physical wounds and injuries. Her estranged husband was jailed.
Upon returning to work only days after the attack, she still had visible wounds. She was harassed by her supervisor and some co-workers about her injuries and the attack. Then she left to get back to work. She was accused by a co-worker of threatening her supervisor. Venable was terminated even though the accusation was not verified nor was she given any chance to share her side of the story.
You can watch Ms. Venable sharing her story in the 2013 video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cy2pK-V_2s.
Ms. Venable worked in a male-dominated environment, with sexism and a lack of commitment to and understanding of domestic violence contributing to her termination. Plus, with termination for workplace violence on her record, she is unable to get another job and has lost her home.
Ms. Venable got a hearing on the unjust termination with the Civil Service Commission in the Fall of 2012. The commission decided in favor of Venable with a 3 to 2 vote, but four yes votes from the seven-member panel are required to overturn an administrative decision. Two of the commissioners were absent.
There will be a hearing with the City of Raleigh about her case on Monday, July 13 at 10am at the Wake County Superior Court (316 Fayetteville Street, Raleigh). Please attend to show your support for Ms. Venable.
** WEAR DEEP PURPLE TO SHOW YOU’RE WITH SHIRLEY **
Purple is associated with domestic violence.
Background on Venable’s story from various sources, including
- Shirley Venable in her own words at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cy2pK-V_2s
- “Please Support Unjustly Fired Raleigh Sanitation Worker Shirley Venable”, (11/5/12), at https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/blackleftunity/VMx-_jsg47k
- NCWU president Tara Romano, who had testified before the Raleigh City Council on Ms. Venable’s behalf in 2011/2012.
- “City Commission Often Lacks Full Attendance” at http://raleighpublicrecord.org/news/2013/03/11/city-commission-often-lacks-full-attendance/
Ms. Venable has been supported by UE Local 150, NC Public Workers Service Union, Black Workers for Justice.