I work in a gas/deli store in NYS and the past 3 months have been having a complicated pregnancy. I was diagnosed with preclamsia (a high risk pregnancy) I work nights and by myself. A week ago I had a spell of blood pressure 160/102 and was blacking out. I called someone to get me but was told I can't leave untill I find someone to cover my shift or till the store was closed. I had 2 hours. While calling everyone who works here no one would come in, not even the managers. I feel it was completely wrong and selfish. This happens all the time. Is this even legal to do?

  • What jurisdiction/state/country are you in? – user1666620 Aug 27 '18 at 3:19
  • 2
    Assuming NYS is New York State. Could you please verify? – AffableAmbler Aug 27 '18 at 4:49
  • Get another job. The health of you and you're baby are paramount. – Neo Aug 27 '18 at 13:07
  • I wouldn't want to be in your manager's shoes if not being able to leave would have caused you damage. – gnasher729 Aug 27 '18 at 14:56
  • "Get another job" - much easier said than done, when pregnant. – Mawg says reinstate Monica Aug 28 '18 at 10:40

I don't mean the following as accusatory as it may sound, so maybe take it as advice for future incidents (which hopefully won't happen again).
It is not easy to think rationally enough in a health crisis

You should have called emergency services first, then inform your managers about the situation (basically forcing their hand by doing so).
When they gave you the run around you should have told them that you'll follow the instructions of the EMT's once they arrived and if that meant that you'd have to go to the hospital you'd do that for your and your child's safety.
Then it would have been best to reiterate that they'll HAVE TO (which they actually do as your employer) make sure that someone WILL be there to take over your shift or close the shop if you indeed were required to go to the hospital as things may happen fast once they decide to take you there.

At this point your manager might have threatened to fire you but I don't think that would stick in any court.
Either way, your and your child's health are your priority.

As has been said, I agree, you shouldn't have shifts alone from now on, just in case this happens again. The blackouts alone may prevent you from calling 911 at a crucial time
Is it possible to at least have a friend or family member there with you or better yet, switch for a day shift when there are more employees present ?

Get legal advice on how to proceed with your employer about this and what your rights and their duties are.

Prepare for the event that you'll be fired and make sure to know how you can (if you can / want to) prevent that and if you can hope for any compensation for what transpired or how they might react to this.

It is also very important to talk to your doctor about this and how to manage work in light of your condition.

| improve this answer | |
  • 4
    While the blackouts definitely have serious health consequences for the OP, they also have major consequences for the business itself. The OP blacking out at a critical moment could place the business itself at risk if it was established that the business knew about the potential for blackouts. – Peter M Aug 27 '18 at 11:08

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .