DECEMBER 21--A federal employee was formally reprimanded this month for excessive workplace flatulence, a sanction that was delivered to him in a five-page letter that actually included a log of representative dates and times when he was recorded “releasing the awful and unpleasant odor” in his Baltimore office.
The worker, a 38-year-old Maryland resident, reportedly provided evidence that he suffered from “some medical conditions” that, at times, caused him to be unable to work full days. But a SSA manager noted in the reprimand letter that, “nothing that you have submitted has indicated that you would have uncontrollable flatulence. It is my belief that you can control this condition.”
A redacted copy of the letter
was recently circulated among officers of the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), the union that represents the SSA worker. Contacted today at his office, the employee said, “I can’t talk to you about this, I’m sorry.” The employee is being represented in connection with the reprimand by a lawyer for his union, AFGE Local 1923. Cynthia Ennis, president of the Baltimore-based local, did not respond to e-mail and phone messages about the matter.