Skip to comments.British Tourist Who Battled Shark on Australian Beach FIRED for Taking Trip Abroad (Medical Leave)
Posted on 03/14/2013 2:05:19 PM PDT by nickcarraway
British tourist who battled shark on Australian beach FIRED for taking trip abroad after bosses see heroic viral video
Paul Marshallsea, 62, said the charity he spent a decade working for fired him after seeing a viral video of him wrestling with a shark in Australia.
Paul Marshallsea was filmed in January wrestling with a shark off on a beach in Australia. He said he was recently fired after returning from this trip because his bosses thought he was on medical leave.
A British tourist who appeared in a viral video grappling with a shark on an Australian beach has been sacked from his job because his bosses thought he was on sick leave, according to British reports.
Paul Marshallsea, 62, said he was suffering from crippling work-related stress when he took the two-month jaunt to Australia with his wife, Wendy, 56.
The two worked together at the Pant and Dowlais Boys and Girls Club in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales.
"The stress of running this in your own community, it's like a monster," Marshallsea told BBC.
"Our doctor advised us to go on holiday so we travelled to stay with friends in Australia," he added.
Marshallsea said the club welcomed him back from the trip by handing him his walking papers.
The charity's trustees said he should have been working if he was "well enough to travel to Australia," according to a letter reviewed by the BBC.
If you’re gonna get caught at the beach on a sick day ... might as well be wrestling a shark.
So it was “crippling”, he was so crippled he went to the Australian beach.
If all the cheats in all of our social systems could be caught and defunded, we’d be sitting pretty!
I draw the limit at shooting dice with a shark.
Reminds me of the preacher that called in sick on a Sunday so he could go golfing. (”Everyone else takes off from church some days”).
So the first drive he gets a hole in one. Moses sees it and runs up to God and starts complaining to God.
The preacher hits ANOTHER hole-in-one. And another. Moses is jumping up and down complaining to God that it just isn’t right that this preacher, skipping Church, is getting rewarded by getting all these holes-in-one.
God says “Relax Moses. Who is he going to get to tell?”
So, I wonder if folks should write to “Pant and Dowlais Boys and Girls Club in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales...”
I would hope that the club would allow him to take a physical or have the doctor discuss his medical condition prior to deciding on letting him go. But most folks serve at the pleasure of their employer to some extent.
...after bosses see heroic viral video....
Heroic? Is it considered heroic if you are trying to save your own skin? I have not watched the vid, but I am assuming from the write-up that the only person he was saving was himself. That would be self-preservation and not heroism, IMO.
Its even better when that joke is about an Orthodox Jew golfing on Yom Kippur! He gets his first and only hole in one! He turns to Gd and asks Him, “Why? Why did you not punish me for golfing on YK?” And Gd answers with a Yiddish accent “Who are you going to tell?”
Agreed. A lot of the other commentators here don’t seem to understand the concept of “stress leave”. It’s likely that nobody would have objected, if the guy had spent the time off sitting on a deck chair in Brighton. He had friends to stay with in Oz, so the trip seems reasonable. Of course, I’m assuming that his condition was properly diagnosed, and that he wasn’t “faking it”.
(BTW, FWIW, I have never taken stress leave; although, like a good many others, I would have qualified at times. My main reason for persevering was simply the knowledge that taking stress leave was a career killer. I have known several people, who did take stress leave. Most were legitimate cases — some were malingerers. I have no sympathy whatsoever for the malingerers. The root cause of most legitimate stress cases is bad management. There are only a finite number of ways to be a good manager; but there are an infinite number of ways to be a bad manager.)
From the same write up—
“The brave granddad dragged the six-foot dusky shark away from an area where families were swimming and nearly lost a leg when the beast snapped at him after he fell.”
The article didn’t say it was physically crippling but rather “crippling work-related stress” and he was advised by his doctor to “go on holiday.”
If that is what his doctor advised, I can’t really fault the guy for taking a trip to Australia to stay with friends.
Please explain— where is he cheating? Where is he in our social systems, or even in Britain’s social systems, for that matter?
His doctor told him to go on holiday due to work related stress. He wasn’t on public assistance, but rather on leave from his job. Not sure how much has to be disclosed re: HIPAA concerns when requesting a medical leave, and guessing it varies by country and to some extent by employer. I’m not in a position to second guess the man nor his doctor.
Okay, thank you. Sorry. As I said, I did not really read the entire piece.
I guess I have gotten just too sensitive about the overuse of the word “hero”. Idiots in the media use it all the time to describe people who are not acting in the least bit heroic, e.g., professional athletes.
No worries. I agree hero/heroic is overused and understand how sensitivities develop toward those things, as I have my own list of grimace worthy buzzwords...
Don’t get me started on “alleged gunman,” the many varied “coexist” bumper stickers, or oxymorons like “Senate ethics committee” and “journalistic integrity...” I also won’t go off about the grammar in the subtitle. I don’t always adhere to the rules of proper grammar, but I do try to avoid throwing the cow over the fence some hay.
Oh, I agree about all of your examples.
Don’t get me started on the grammar. When we are posting on the fly here, I excuse us FReepers for ungrammatical sentences and typos. What really infuriates is what passes for writing by so-called journalists these days. Most of them have the composition skills of an average 3rd grade student and the reasoning facility of a trout.
You do realize you now owe all trout an apology... Especially those surfing the ‘net.
The need for stress leave may have been perfectly justified, because the charity doesn't appear to be very charitable:
>>> Marshallsea said the club welcomed him back from the trip by handing him his walking papers. <<<
:) Pretty sure the trout try to avoid the net.
Since he was fired for cause, I assumed that he was breaking some rule or another.
On my part it was pretty much a knee-jerk response to my experience that shows me how cheating for personal gain is so common from the ghetto tenements to the fake farmers to the halls of congress.
The article, unfortunately, leaves a lot up to the imagination and doesn’t provide enough pertinent details.
My impression was that the employer saw the video and were working with the idea he was on medical leave for physical reasons, rather than mental. It may have been their knee-jerk reaction to fire him. He may not have wanted the stress/mental aspect known to his employer, and the doctor may have provided paperwork that was ambiguous regarding the nature of his medical leave. Based on another poster’s comments on this, stress leave can be frowned upon and a career killer.
Whether he was cheating the system or not, pretty much between him and his doctor.
I don’t normally need a doctor’s excuse for work issues, but sometimes have needed one in order to put a temporary hold on a gym membership. I prefer a generic one that doesn’t provide all the gory details. That would be my preference for one needed for work, as well. I think the employer can request additional information from the doctor, but HIPAA sometimes precludes how much is relayed. If he had a generic medical leave excuse to go on holiday, his employer may have just assumed he was physically unable to work, rather than it being a stress/mental health issue.
You are correct that cheating the system for personal gain is extremely pervasive in today’s society. I can see why it is easy to think it was the case here. And, I’m not saying it _wasn’t_. At the same time, I can see how he could have legitimately been taking leave and how his employer might have assumed it was for physical, instead of mental, reasons.