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October 11, 2013

Employee terminated for use of vulgar language and conduct detrimental to the employer's interests


Employee terminated for use of vulgar language and conduct detrimental to the employer's interests
2013 NY Slip Op 06061, Appellate Division, Third Department

An employee [A] called the office to check on the attendance of a particular staff member [B] with whom she had been having difficulties. A, believing that she was speaking to another staff member, when in fact, B had answered the phone, made a statement about B that contained obscenities and a racial epithet. The employer, finding that the A’s statement had caused a disruption in the operation of the workplace, terminated her.

A’s application for unemployment insurance was rejected by the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board after the Board ruled that A was disqualified from receiving unemployment insurance benefits because her employment was terminated due to misconduct.

A appealed the Board’s determination but the Appellate Division sustained the Board’s ruling, explaining that  “An employee's use of vulgar language and conduct that is detrimental to the employer's interests have been found to constitute disqualifying misconduct,” citing Matter of Cheeseboro, 84 AD3d 1635.

Given the undisputed facts of this case, said the court, substantial evidence supports the Board's determination that A's statement and its effect on the workplace environment constituted disqualifying misconduct.

The decision is posted on the Internet at:
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