Was I wrongfully terminated? Posted on February 05, 2011
I am employed as a sub-contractor for MPRI a division of L-3 Com. My employment is at will. Two months ago my company informed me that they wanted to get work visas in case of medical emergencies. They directed me to send a copy of my passport and four photos to a company representative via email - which I did promptly. Two weeks ago I received an email insisting I mail my passport to a company rep. in Kabul, upon further reading of the email it revealed that others had sent their passports in two - three weeks prior and they were barely arriving. My concerns were. 1. I did not feel comfortable about mailing my passport anywhere let alone in Afghanistan. 2. I have time off scheduled beginning of March and did not want to take the chance of mailing my passport and not having it back when it was time for me to leave. 3. Being without my passport for an extended period of time would make my employment no longer at will. I informed my lead about my concerns and he passed them up.
The company then suggested I FedEx my passport or hand it off to anyone headed to Kabul to hand off to the rep. collecting them all. The company informed us that they could not move forward until ALL the employees passports were in Kabul, they had received the majority of them and were holding their passports until mine and a couple other employees’ passports arrived to start the visa process. I informed the Program Manager (PM) for MPRI. He informed me that what they are doing may be illegal and referenced the guidelines under human trafficking and holding someone’s passport without their consent or for an unreasonable amount of time. I informed my lead of this and he sent an email to my company reps stating that we will not mail our passports and referenced the same guidelines our PM showed us as the reason why. Two days later I received a call from my rep asking if I got his email, I answered no and asked what this was about; he replied check your email and I will call back.
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