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Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)

 
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:10 PM   #1
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Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


Is Access to a Toilet a ‘Basic Human Right’?: Jury Awards Two Workers $332K for Not Having One

Posted on May 22, 2012 at 9:40pm by Liz Klimas PORTLAND, Ore. (The Blaze/AP) — Two workers who claimed they were forced to urinate in a bucket have been awarded $332,000 after a jury found they were fired for complaining to Oregon regulators about the lack of an onsite toilet.

The Oregonian reports that Douglas Eki and Xerxes “Jason” Doctolero told the state Occupational Safety and Health Division that they used the bucket because they couldn’t get to a toilet fast enough.

(Relate: ‘I’m a little disgusted’: Why is NJ capital city down to its last box of toilet paper?)

They testified that their employer, Menzies Aviation, refused to provide them with a toilet and that using the restrooms of nearby businesses wasn’t a solution because they were not welcome. The men performed mechanical work at Portland International Airport.

The state agency cited the company in August 2010 for failing to provide restrooms. The men were fired later that month.

A company lawyer contended the men were fired because they kept using the bucket after being told not to.

Here‘s more from The Oregonian on the jury’s decision and the reaction of the men who were involved:

The jury found that the company, which has more than 17,000 employees worldwide and is headquartered in the United Kingdom, retaliated against the men for cooperating with the OSHA inspector. Juror Lila Zamani said the company’s treatment of the men was “definitely despicable.” She said she and other jurors believed that having easy access to a toilet was a basic human right.


“We talked about the concept of dignity — being able to go to the bathroom within 30 seconds or a minute,” Zamani said.

After Multnomah County Circuit Judge Edward Jones read the verdict, Eki and Doctolero gave each other a hearty hug, then turned to their attorney and hugged him. Doctolero said working without ready access to a restroom was humiliating, but it was also embarrassing to take the stand and speak about accidents while on the job.

“Hopefully no one will have to suffer again what I’ve been through,” said Doctolero, 42, a Portland father of four who worked as much as 85 hours a week between two jobs.

The Oregonian reports that it is “unclear” if the company will appeal the court’s decision.

The breakdown of the $332K award is $77,000 to Doctolero and $15,000 to Eki for wages and benefits they lost after being fired. Each were also given $30,000 for “pain and suffering.” The award for punitive damages, which according to the Oregonian will go to the state’s crime victims compensation fund, was $90,000.
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:48 PM   #2
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


Interesting that the state gets nearly as much as they do. Who's watching the hen house?

On the whole 30 seconds to a bathroom. Obviously these folks have never worked construction. I've been places where there was nowhere to go, nowhere to hide from the neighbors and I couldn't leave all my gear and run to a store. I just had to suck it up and drive on.

I would think that working in the Portland Airport, there would be somewhere to go. Tons of public bathrooms. I think they were just not wanting to deal with the hassle of security or something of that nature and kept using the buckets.

I am sure theres a lot more to this story.

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Old 05-23-2012, 12:27 AM   #3
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


I just piss in a big gulp cup
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:55 AM   #4
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


My choice is a gatorade bottle.
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Old 05-23-2012, 07:14 AM   #5
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


I just add it to the bottle of Mountain Dew my buddy always carries. Looks the same, so what the heck.
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Old 05-23-2012, 04:56 PM   #6
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


I'll use a bucket, gatorade bottle, or coffee can. But it does tick me off when doing a remodel and the GC is too tight to spring for a portajohn. If you have to do a duece you can waste half an hour getting to a store or gas station and back.
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Old 05-23-2012, 05:07 PM   #7
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


It is understood here in Oklahoma, new construction job sites always have a porta john..and large remodels, meaning on site for more then a few days, get one as well, or a bathroom is made available.

I do not get the notion of a GC being "too tight" to get one on site, since the customer pays for it. That is one more detail we cover when we discuss starting a job.

I have considered buying a few of the porta johns myself, and then calling the cleaning company out, since there are times they don't get used, and other times they need to get cleaned every week. If I had to be on site every day again, working, my trailer would have an RV toilet in it. A v-nose trailer would be ideal.
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Old 05-23-2012, 07:34 PM   #8
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


Code here for a out house...

When people get pissy with me I tell them plumbing is a luxury and if you don't like the price, then call someone else...
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Old 05-23-2012, 07:37 PM   #9
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


Quote:
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I just add it to the bottle of Mountain Dew my buddy always carries. Looks the same, so what the heck.
gives a little wang to it
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:00 PM   #10
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


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gives a little wang to it
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:36 PM   #11
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


Most remodel jobs I've done the homeowners have been very hospitable and have offered the use of their bathroom, which I appreciate very much, and always try to make sure not to make a mess.
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Old 05-23-2012, 09:12 PM   #12
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


They should have had a bathroom. The company knew it was a problem, and they failed to address it. I dont think they should have been compensated that amount, thats ridiculous, but a bathroom is a must on a jobsite, or at work, in a civilized society.
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Old 05-23-2012, 09:20 PM   #13
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


Interesting story but it's not about toilets per se, it's about retaliation. What got the company fined so much was firing the two guys after they cooperated with OSHA.

Going from what was in the story, it appears the company initially did not provide toilets, hence the bucket. After the company was cited, the two guys got fired. Clearly the jury believed the firing was retaliatory, and that will get you fined alot more than just no toilet.

Still not sure why the workers could not use the airport bathrooms. Perhaps they were in a remote area, or security procedures would not allow them to go back and forth.

Anyway, I have little sympathy for the company. They should have taken their citation and fixed the problem. Actually, they should have just gotten a PP in the first place.
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Old 05-23-2012, 09:51 PM   #14
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


332 k is a bit much but it seems indecent to remove all the toilets when there really is no rush and then bring free coffee often through the day as if it is a favour, you never know when explosive diarrhea will hit, when so I return the favour in a paint can , seal the lid ,date and label it Fresh closet paint. Sure a coffee will keep me speedy unless I'm driving off to get relief, but they don't care they just drop by to look over stuff and then when they do install new potties they say don't use it'll get dirty.
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Old 05-23-2012, 09:55 PM   #15
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


I agree, $332K sounds like alot, but the state is getting $108K (60% of punitive) and their lawyers will get 30% of the remainder.

Best case these guys will get $80k each. That won't last long if they are out of work and have families to feed.

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Old 05-23-2012, 11:44 PM   #16
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


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I agree, $332K sounds like alot, but the state is getting $108K (60% of punitive) and their lawyers will get 30% of the remainder.

Best case these guys will get $80k each. That won't last long if they are out of work and have families to feed.

It would easily last me three years at my present cost of living even after upgrading my still broken big screen TV. If I was from another country it would last even longer.
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Old 05-23-2012, 11:52 PM   #17
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


On a remodel I just finished a tight azz GC didn't get a PORTA potty and his subs used mine. I don't really care they're used it, it's 20 minutes to a public facility, but damn. I can imagine how well that azzhole must pay his subs if he won't pay 80$ a month for a chiter.

Btw, I have yet to drop a duece in a bucket.
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:53 AM   #18
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)



Quote:
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Btw, I have yet to drop a duece in a bucket.
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:55 AM   #19
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


Quote:
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Btw, I have yet to drop a duece in a bucket.
i lived on a glacier for a couple weeks helping with some geology research. we could take a piss, but anything else could potentially taint the pristine environment we were in (up near golden, BC). the only thing better than dropping a deuce in a bucket is having to helicopter that bucket out with a couple weeks' worth of "deposits" in it.
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Old 05-24-2012, 11:27 AM   #20
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Re: Is Access To A Toilet A ‘Basic Human Right’?: (This Isn't A Joke!)


For some reason Toby Keith comes to mind.

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I fill you up!

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