A story of an employee who was ostracized for having bed bugs at home turned up in Joe Fiorito’s column in The Star on Tuesday.
The man, Mel, told co-workers who wondered why he was scratching about his bed bugs at home.
Mel works with a dozen other men; a city job, to do with waste-water pumping. So, how did Mel’s mates react to the news about the bed bugs?
‘At first they didn’t treat me bad. They’d say they felt sorry for me.’ Their sympathy didn’t last.
‘Pretty soon they didn’t want me around. To be honest, I don’t blame them.’
Mel had been doing his best. He was taking precautions. He was shaking out his clothes before he went to work. Not good enough, I guess.
‘Eventually, they didn’t want to work with me. The acting super told me to take two weeks off — the guys were complaining.’
After being off the job two weeks and coming back, it got even uglier.
However, the story has a happy ending: Mel got heat treatment.
(Let’s also hope he’s had a lot of sealing and caulking done: he believes he got bed bugs from neighbors in his building.)
I know you’ll want to read the whole article here.
Opinions vary on whether it’s a good idea to tell co-workers about one’s bed bugs at home. Many folks go to great lengths to avoid spreading them, but co-workers might not understand that. On the other hand, lots of people also take every opportunity to educate people they know about the problem.
Ultimately, you should consider carefully whether to tell your boss or co-workers, and if so, who to tell, and how.