Union Worker Who Earned Six Figures Now Homeless

union worker

Victims of violence often face a difficult road during recovery, but for one Canadian longshoreman a beating four years ago has left him penniless, homeless and wondering what to do next.

It was in 2008 when Malcolm Neale got into a fight with another longshoreman at a job site in North Vancouver, British Columbia, The Province newspaper reports. Neale, 42, said that he was the victim of an unprovoked attack by a drunken co-worker, who struck him savagely with a metal pipe.

"All I did was go to work," the Vancouver newspaper quotes him as saying. "I was struck several times with a metal pipe and it's completely turned my life around," said Neale, who once earned yearly wages of 120,000 Canadian dollars (about $116,000 at today's exchange rates). He added, "I'm homeless."

Neale received CA$180,000 in an out-of-court settlement following the incident, but medical and legal bills left him with a much smaller sum -- CA$50,000.

Further, union rules require that he surrender the CA$2,200 monthly disability payment to which he's entitled to restore the CA$180,000 payment to union coffers.

In other words, Neale won't receive a monthly disability payment until the full amount is repaid -- in three more years. Neale, who has been unable to work since the incident and lives in a shelter, gets by on a CA$900 disability pension payment from the Canadian government.

More: 9 Ways To Bounce Back After Losing Your Job

Neale called the shelter "disgusting and depressing" and said that he suffers from acute anxiety and prolonged post-traumatic stress disorder.

"I have pleaded with the union to restore my benefits," he said. "They refused outright."

Neale told the newspaper that he believes he is being penalized for filing a lawsuit against members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and their employer, Western Stevedoring.

But a spokesman for the longshoremen's union said the compensation rules, which have been in place for three decades, have been applied fairly.

"The payments are being offset until the settlement is used up," the newspaper quoted the unnamed spokesman as saying. "When somebody receives a third-party settlement, we expect to be paid."




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24 Comments

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maqlcolm xxx

Malcolm Neale here, my deepest grattitude to all who have posted. This story onlY covers one dynamic of the incident and aftermath... Was found out later this guy is extremely violent and strong, he ploughed through foreman to strike me two mire times while first aid tried to stop "profuse bleeding". Police left the scene b4 I came to under the premise it would be handled ''in house'' a police complaint has been launched against NORTH VANCOUVER RCMP. COMPLETE cover up. Trevor Clifford, Labour Relations for BC Maritime Employers GAVE THE ATTACKER HIS JOB BACK After 6 MONTHS paid REHAB, CITING he had no evidence or witnesses. I ASKED WHY IN HIS investigation he DID NOT INTERVIEW the only willing witness to the assault, the first aid attendant??? Trevor replied ''I don't have to answer that question and walked away like a pathetic little COWARD! SO FRUSTRATING!!!... Then the lawyer who launched the civil action and ''Acted in my BEST INTERESTS'' when I signed the so called settlement, Andrew Schroeder- DISGUSTING!!! Thanks again to all who comment. Malcolm.

July 01 2012 at 4:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
R&B

Sounds like workers comp and social security in America...when you finally get anything, after lawyers fees, and paying for medical for years, work comp denying for years, u get nothing but chicken feed...then Social security off sets because u got a comp payment, and won't take the lawyer fees and medical payments off they start at the top like you got it all...I feel so sorry for this guy, who just went to work!

June 29 2012 at 3:22 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Robb Corless

Here's a video I just completed..It's called Life Is Just Like A Circus.. Enjoy.... http://youtu.be/Jv18hGMgMxk

June 28 2012 at 11:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
honeysuga2

Someone please create an account for him on Indiegogo! The bus lady got a ton of money. People can do the same for him.

June 28 2012 at 9:51 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
iwonymary

The AFL-CIO in NY agreed to cuts in Workers' Comp. benefits for all of labor. Funny how after this many of the higher-ups all got appointments to State agencies by Patterson and Cuomo. Now people injured on the job in NY cannot get healthcare for their injuries and if you are seriously injured you go on welfare or SSD-in other words the taxpayer pays for their injuries while the insurers get away with not paying.
Unions used to be a good idea. Now they are nothing but crooks. How can they be allowed to make agreements for all of labor when they only represent LESS THAN 6% OF US LABOR???????

June 28 2012 at 7:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
katfishvp

This guy needs a good lawyer capable of suing the Union, the ******* who beat him and the lawyers who represent them. That's justice.

June 28 2012 at 7:00 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to katfishvp's comment
Konrad

You forget this is Canada not the US.

June 28 2012 at 7:11 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Kip

The Guy made over 100 thousand a year and had no savings? And I should care? I only made half of what this guy made and I was able to save quite a bit.

June 28 2012 at 5:46 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Nancy

No more free lunch for you..

June 28 2012 at 5:44 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jankantius

Unions were a great idea, when they were run by the workers. Somewhere along the line workers were missled into thinking they needed proffessional union administrators to take care of their interests. The administrators generally make way more than the workers and have little in common with them. A former president of my teacher's union was real cozy with the government. She de-indexed our pensions so there is no increase associated with the price of living... Shortly after that she stepped into a government job.
I was once a union rep... and at a meeting I suggested that we bargain for 5 discretionary days when we could take time off to take care of personal business without anyone being able to ask us about it. I got shouted down by people who said we had ample "sick days" . Was it odd for me to think that I would be uncomfortable calling in sick and then be seen around town taking care of business? By the way, 40 years ago when I worked for the NY State department of mental Hygene, we always had the 5 personal leave days... and no one was allowed to ask what they were for.

June 28 2012 at 4:49 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
Karrie Bond

WHAAATTTT???? They "expect to be paid"!!??? Who the hell ARE these people? What pigs!

June 28 2012 at 4:43 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply

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