I’m a in home caregiver. I work for an agency that assigns me my clients. We have had a tremendous turnover in our office support staff. I have not met or been introduced to any of the staff now in the office.

Recently they filled the nurse on duty position and she came to one of my two clients' homes to put the MARS (form for administrating medications) in place and discuss any issues me or my client were having. There were no issues needing addressed. She then came back to the client's home several times over the next few weeks. Seemingly making sure I wasn’t present when she visited. She would ask my client if she wanted a different caregiver at each of these visits. My client said no she was very happy with me being her caregiver. One visit the nurse asked if I was doing my job well and jokingly my client responded “she has been slacking off a bit lately”

A couple weeks go by and I receive a call from the assistant director to discuss the concern my client had about me not completing all my tasks as needed. I did admit that I could see were she might feel that way. Told assistant director I had a lot of stuff going on in my private life that had wore me down but was on top of it and the clients’ needs were being met. In the meantime, both clients had a lot of doctor appointments that I needed to be there for.

The conversation with the assistant director was made minutes before I was supposed to be entering the client's home. I took the call, which made me late, in the hall outside the clients home. When I entered the client's home I apologized for being late and told her I was on the phone with the office. She asked why they had called. Told her they wanted to discuss her concerns with me. She asked what concerns and I told her about not completing necessary tasks. Her and I discuss this further and she let me know that she was not, making a complaint when she told the nurse I had been slacking. It was just an off-the-cuff joking remark.

A couple weeks later the assistant Director told me I was being taken off my client’s schedule permanently because I had discussed our previous phone conversation with my client and that was considered gossip and very unprofessional. I told her it wasn’t true, and I disagreed that discussing an issue with a client was unprofessional. The assistant Director knew I was using the client’s phone to clock in because I had lost my phone in a car accident I had the day before.

At this point, I had to agree with her terms in order to keep my job. The terms were I had to take a course on professionalism. Therefore, she will assigned me another client. I was not allowed to take back the client I had lost. This upset me very much.

On a recent call to HR, I was transferred to the assistant Director and not allowed to speak with my HR department.

I don’t agree with the way they treated me or the client. She has been left without anybody to do her medications which I set up a week at a time. There are also other things I do for her that others are not trained for. She’s actually told me that in the past she has had caregivers so young they didn’t know how to sweep the floor. I am so concerned about her well-being.

I would like to make a complaint about this assistant Director but I’m not sure who to go to. Especially since I am not allowed to talk to HR. This company has several offices throughout the state and I believe are controlled by a board of directors. I do not know who the assistant directors direct boss is. How do I find out?

  • 6
    It would help to add a country tag. Denying you access to HR is illegal in some legislations.
    – Hilmar
    Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 12:30
  • 6
    Advice to the OP: Don't use your real name for this sort of post, this is a public forum open to anyone, are you sure your manager won't read it? Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 13:11
  • Have you considered that they tried to replace with cheaper labour? Not saying that's what they tried, but it looks like they tried to find an excuse why you shouldn't work with that client.
    – CrazyFrog
    Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 23:44
  • 1
    Friendly reminder that HR is not your friend in matters like this - they exist to protect the company. They may be friendly and listen well, but at the end of the day they're going to play the position that bests protects your assistant director and the company from liability. Though you weren't even allowed to talk to them, so yeah, probably just run, lol. Commented Nov 28, 2023 at 16:22

5 Answers 5


Okay- Wall of Text aside - there's 2 things that jump out at me, I'm not going to answer the question you've asked per se though:

We have had a tremendous turnover in our office support staff.


I was transferred to the assistant Director and not allowed to speak with my HR department

This is my sincere and honest assesment:


High staff turnover and an HR department that won't speak with you. That's more red flags than a Live-fire Rifle Range.

Logging a complaint against an Assistant Director in a company where HR will actively tell you to go away is not a company that's worth your time logging a complaint.


  • 1
    I am impressed you read through all that. I got about 30% through, then I gave up. Too densely formatted for me lol! That said, I get the same impression you did: red flags and a need to run away!
    – Gertsen
    Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 7:56
  • While I would agree that resigning is always one of the available courses of action, an answer that doesn't even attempt to address the question asked isn't really helpful on a Q&A site.
    – Saes
    Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 8:58
  • @Saes: Reframing the question (answering the question behind the question) is accepted here. Though "it sounds bad, find a better job" is not often the best answer, sometimes that really does need to be said.
    – keshlam
    Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 13:46
  • @Keshlam I feel like this answer answers it as is. It could be reworded to "Go to a different employer." instead of "Run"... I think this is a legitimate response.
    – Questor
    Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 16:54
  • @Saes - I know what you mean - but given the information provided, it sounds like such a Toxic workplace that attempting to raise a grievance will result in a lot of wasted time and effort that won't achieve anything in the way of desired results and will likely lead to the poster being administratively let-go (AKA Fired) - It's a no win situation and to quote the Movie 'War Games': "The only winning move is not to play". Commented Nov 27, 2023 at 19:06

If you can't get HR on the phone or by email or by writing a paper letter, and there really is an HR department or individual, visit their office.

Ditto the director

These are really the only places available within the company to usefully complain about an assistant director, if talking with them directly doesn't solve the problem.

But be prepared for a non-helpful answer.

"Change jobs if this one is broken" is all too often a glib non-answer, but sometimes that really is the only option available. Correcting upper management is hard, and may involve risking your job, so being ready to look elsewhere is a good precaution.


You're probably wasting your time, especially if you live in a state with at-will employment.

I want to make something very clear: I believe that caregiver jobs are very important!

However, the training required for an agency to put someone out to working isn't that extensive. This means that the workers are easily replaceable. You can send all the letters you want, and emails, and try to make phone calls. But you have to consider whether the company's administration is willing to invest 4, 8, 12, 24 or more hours of the staff's time trying to resolve who did what in a situation -- this is time that they can't spend doing anything else. Time is money, and the agency can't make any profits burning too time on the phone solving client issues. To add to that, calling the client for feedback can make the client even more upset.

There's always going to be friction on this job, because caregivers are dealing with the public. And if the friction seems to point out that the caregiver is at fault in any way, it's less expensive time-wise to replace the caregiver than to investigate the issue. The agency has a whole database full of people who can replace you, and they can invest 15-30 minutes to find one.

It's honorable that you set up the client's medications, and care about outcomes. But the company would be liable for what happens if they're not administered, not you. You could make a call to your local Adult Protective Services hotline, but just because you can doesn't mean that you should. You don't know what has transpired after you left, and you can't prove any mistreatment without overstepping.

I get the sense that you might have a great big heart for this client, but you're gonna have to let go.


While I think TheDemonLord's answer is the correct choice for you personally...

I think that your main worry here is not your job/working for people who treat you poorly, but for your former client whose health/wellbeing you are worried about. This is an admirable concern.

In your contract is there anything that prohibits you from encouraging former clients to switch to a different at home care giving network? Could you find an alternative care giving network and encourage your former client to jump ship with you?

If that is not an option due to terms set in your current contract.

Another option is that your former client could conceivably of her own "volition" raise a lot of complaints with the company you work because you are no longer her caregiver. While your employer might ignore you, a very loud/vocal/irritating customer is hard to ignore. The customer is always right after all.

That being said... your question asks how to get past your current boss and lodge a complaint.

It is legal to be transferred to your current boss from HR in the unless your complaint is about sexual harassment, discrimination, or safety concerns. This complaint sadly doesn't meet any of those. except, its possible that your company could be considered guilty of criminal neglect of an elder, which is a big deal.

She has been left without anybody to do her medications which I set up a week at a time.

So what are you doing you doing? You are protecting the company that you work for, from being guilty of criminal neglect of an elder, that the associate director due to a personnel grudge against you has caused. Which has lead to this client not getting her medicine. That is criminal neglect right there, due to your company assuming the burden of providing medical care for this client. This is the message that you want to convey to HR when you communicate to them again... Make sure that you send this message as an email, and bcc your personnel inbox.

Your associate director can tell you not to contact HR until she is blue in the face. But unless it is against company policy for employees to contact HR there is literally nothing she can do about it, except make up a reason to fire you. And as the email that you will have sent to HR and bcc'd to yourself will prove. The real reason that you were fired was that you were you were trying to protect an elder from criminal neglect and were fired in retaliation because of it. This will lead to bad things for your employer. If your HR is competent, they will know this and not allow your associate director to fire you. Also this complaint will be taken more seriously.

Honestly, The worse thing that that can happen if you try to contact HR again is that you get fired. Which given the high demand for at home caregivers is not a big deal, finding another job is easy. Just use your former clients as references to show your dedication to providing high quality service.


From what I read in your post, it looks like you are targeted.

Is it to replace you at that particular client or remove you entirely from your position to fill it with someone else, not sure.

Crooked executives often "travel" with entourage of brownnoser's between employments

In this case I can only suggest lining up new position and, depending on your location, contact an employment lawyer. If you have evidence to support what you wrote in the post, you may have a legitimate claim

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