An Iowan who’s heading off to the Army will keep his day job for now, with help from a state workforce counselor. Rick Gay is a Veterans Career Consultant and Disabled Veterans Outreach Representative for Iowa Workforce in southeast Iowa. Gay says his mission’s to help with disability paperwork and everything else a veteran might have a question with, a wide range , from food, rent and utilities to an ugpraded discharge, his office is a clearing house for it all. Gay got the case when a worker called to say he’d been fired from his job at a Wal-Mart warehouse. Josh Gerling told the Burlington Workforce representative he’d announced his plan to leave late in May but instead got a pink slip April first…and it was no joke. Gerling. Gay says Gerling’s worked for Wal-Mart before, and when his National Guard unit was called up to active duty, he left to serve overseas. Gerling returned and got his job back under the reemployment rights of military members. Then this spring he told his employer he’d decided to leave and make the Army his career. Gerling told supervisors he’d work till May 26, but instead was told he was done immediately. The soldier contacted the veterans career consultant and Gay says he in turn phoned the discount store chain. When Josh came in, Gay says he had no hard feelings, he just didn’t understand why he’d been fired when he announced his plan to leave in a month and a half. Gay says the situation was quickly straightened out and adds “Wal-Mart’s always been one staunch supporter of the military and its veterans.” Gay says the military has a lot of veterans who work for Wal-Mart, in the stores and warehouses. Gay also says the decision to keep Gerling on the job till his announced departure date was “the fastest turnaround for a claim like this” that he’d ever seen.
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