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168 Days: Light At The End Of The Tunnel

By Ken Snyder

As my college classes were wrapping up for the 2013 Fall semester, one of the members of the executive leadership that operated the non-profit agency I had been volunteering at asked me to stop by her office for a visit. I was delighted beyond words to hear her say "we want to find a way to get you on the payroll." This place had been a godsend for me: while my school work took up a lot of my time, having this place to "get away" to gave me an outlet for a lot of energy that could have become very destructive. They were even more than willing to wait for me to finish my semester before officially joining the payroll. The timing couldn't have been better: my final five classes were not "lining up", so I was not going to be able to attend in a "full time" status anyway - I was going to have to start looking for a new job.

On 16 December 2013 I resumed full-time employment. It didn't pay what BPU did, but one thing's for sure: they showed far more integrity than BPU ever did. I was now a part-time student as I finished up my Associate's degree, but with my new employment "family" behind me I felt more confident than ever.


That confidence gave me renewed energy to continue the fight against BPU. I was going to keep what happened to me in the public -- with intention of first, exposing the lies and cowardly acts BPU did; and second, warning others that unscrupulous employers will violate USERRA and use any tactics they can to cover their tracks. We were already setting precedent in USERRA cases with the decision Judge Robinson made regarding BPU's/Johnson's/Clark's lack of immunity. In fact, here's an excerpt from an employment law seminar where our case is quoted. Another avenue for this energy were pages on Facebook focusing on news and issues regarding military/veteran's issues, Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas. I posted articles about my story and was challenged regarding what happened -- in each and every case once I posted a link to these pages the comments went dead silent. Not once was I challenged by the same person again, not once did anyone from BPU respond to my comments. However, BPU did take the steps to insure I couldn't post on their Facebook page -- much like anyone else that would dare post negative comments.


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