Fired Autistic Janitor Mel Turner Gets His Job Back (Kinda)
A man with autism who was fired from his job as a janitor at a Long Island school is probably going to get his job back following outrage directed at the school administrators who gave him the boot.
For now, school officials said Friday, 45-year-old Mel Turner is back on the payroll at the Wantagh Union Free School District, where he's been a janitor for the last five years, but isn't allowed to actually return to work until a doctor determines whether he's a safety threat -- which he isn't; he's just a nice guy who's forced to put up with teenage bullies who make fun of his disability.
A few weeks ago, some punks were bullying Turner, which prompted the beloved janitor to have a bit of an outburst: he told a different group of kids he planned to blow up the school.
The outburst was recorded by a student, who turned the tape over to his parents. It ultimately found its way to school administrators, who fired Turner.
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Once word of the firing went public, parents, students and other members of the community rallied to get the school officials to reconsider the firing -- which they declined to do, noting that their "hands were tied" by school regulations.
Their hands, apparently, have now been untied -- which tends to be the case when an entire community rallies to get people to do the right thing.
"I feel great they gave me a second chance and I promise not to do it again," Turner told reporters last week.
Turner is expected to see a doctor this week, and hopefully be back at the school as soon as possible.
School officials ignored our request for comment.
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