What's UP, Walmart? You Fired a Worker Who Called Police After Finding a Dog in a Hot Car
Carla Cheney used to be employed by a Walmart in Kemptville, Ontario. But when she spotted a Newfoundland in a car on a hot day, with the windows only cracked an inch, she called the cops. The man who owned the dog was a customer of Walmart. Her manager fired her.
There's more to the story that this -- and it gets even worse for Walmart.
It started when Cheney was in front of her store in her street clothes before her shift. She saw a man in a pickup lock his dog in the cab, rolling up the windows until they were just cracked. The dog had been trying to follow the man into the store, and so he secured the dog in the worst possible way.
Cheney couldn't believe it. "I said, 'Is this really happening? I'm going to give him about five or 10 minutes and then I'm going to call the police,'" she said to CBS Canada.
She called the police. An officer came, took his license number, and headed into the store to find the man. Later, the man drove past Cheney (we don't know what happened between him and the officer) and the two had words. He said she should mind her own business. She said she would call the cops if he did it again. He said he was no longer shopping at Walmart.
Later that day, her manager said he'd like a word with her. She told her side of the story. He said that the next time it happened, she should come to him. She countered and said that if she saw "something unsafe" that she "would just go to the police if I thought it was necessary."
That did it. She got fired. Handed over her vest and her badge, was told to clean out her locker, and was shown the door.
According to Cheney, the manager said he fired her for being rude to a customer. Cheney doesn't believe that should have been an issue. First, she was off duty. But mostly because, well, you're not supposed to leave dogs in hot cars.
"I don't think it should be an issue even if I was on the clock … because it's on the news and we're being told not to leave animals and children in cars," she told CBS Canada. "I thought I was doing the right thing."
It's not the first time Cheney stepped in to save a dog trapped in a hot car at her job. The previous week, she called the police on a woman who had done it. Before she did, however, she said she contacted her manager.
“I was pretty upset and I said to my manager, ‘What do I do?’ He said it was none of our business and went into the store.”
And you wonder why she didn't bother with telling her manager about it the second time.
We'll be sure to give you Walmart's take on this, if the company ever says anything about it. According to CBS Canada, Walmart Canada has a policy for handling these situations, and it is reviewing its guidelines with the staff at the Kemptville store. The company wouldn't comment on this case.
A Facebook page has been created supporting Cheney, called Animal Rights for Kemptville Walmart.
Via CBS Canada