Thursday, July 8, 2010

An Island

I emailed the US Embassy in Seoul today to see if there was anything that they could do for us or if they had any advice.  They emailed me back very promptly and expressed sympathy about our situation.  But, all they could tell me was that the embassy isn't permitted to give us legal advice regarding or represent us in employment matters.  They could only suggest that we consult a lawyer and tell them about our legal issues.  They provided us with two links to lists of English speaking lawyers in Korea.  I will email them for advice, but we can't afford legal representation and we don't really have time for a case.  We just want the company to be looked into.

I'm really starting to feel like we're on an island and no one can help us.  It's pretty maddening and damn depressing.  I don't want this company to get away with this just because we don't have the resources or time to push for legal action.

So, after work Rahee and I walked out of the building and I told her everything that the company has done to us.  I told her to look into her pension, health care and taxes.  Her mom works for the company, so she'll be checking for her, too.  Also, if the laws are the same for Korean citizens as they are for foreigners, Rahee is owed 30 days pay because they fired her without written warning.  She told me that Montana told her that she shouldn't speak to Ian or me unless she wanted to suffer a similar fate.

If I can help Rahee get the ball rolling and turn the company over to the Labor Board, Taxation Office or someone that can hold them accountable, possibly audit them and (fingers crossed) remove their business license.  Rahee isn't as gung-ho about going after the company as we are because her mom has worked for the company for several years.  I told her to call the Labor Board and ask them about all the possible consequences.

I just don't even know what to do with myself anymore.

Good night.

1 comment:

  1. I am so sorry that the Embassy was a dead end for you both. I know they can't get involved with you personally, but can they have the company investigated because it does employ foreigners?

    It is very frustrating to know that justice does not prevail sometimes. I still hold the hope that this company will meet its demise. Or at the very least Julia and Montana (it did not take him long to turn into someone just about as bad as Julia) to get their just deserts. Take comfort in the fact that you are doing all you can to make that happen. You both should be commended for not taking the apathetic approach. You are warning everyone you can not to go within 20 miles of those schools, so you are doing something very positive there.

    Did you change your status regarding employment? Will that get the school in trouble and start a ball rolling, or is it not worth your time and trouble. Keep us posted.