Verizon Worker Suspended Weeks Without Pay For Rescuing Cat

Stock photo of a cat, staring off into the distance.
susannp4 / Pixabay

While most of us would like to think we’d be rewarded for our heroic efforts, it seems one utility worker was punished for his actions.

As reported by Cole And Marmalade, Verizon worker Maurice German found himself thrust into a precarious situation earlier this month. While in the town of Port Richmond, Philadelphia, German was approached by a few locals. It seems a cat had found its way to the top of a utility pole and had been stuck there for approximately 12 hours.

Unfortunately, despite reaching out to the fire department, the phone company, and various animal rescue groups, the residents of the neighborhood did not hear back; their cries for help went unanswered. As a result, they asked Maurice to come to their rescue, seeing as how he had a Verizon boom lift, which would be able to reach the stranded cat.

At the time of rescue, the cat in question, Princess Momma, had been stuck on the top of the utility pole for nearly 12 hours, having scaled the structure late on Friday, March 15. Thankfully, Maurice was able to use his work equipment to reach the top of the pole and was able to coax the cat towards him. As he grabbed her, the crowd below cheered as Maurice grabbed Princess Momma and lowered himself.

Unfortunately, while Princess Momma had escaped danger, trouble was beginning to ramp up for Maurice. Shortly after the incident went viral, Verizon suspended Maurice German for 15 days without pay. The company issued the following statement.

“We take no joy when our employees face consequences related to their job duties,” the statement read. “We are, however, fully committed and responsible for keeping our employees and customers safe. All of our field technicians go through extensive training that is focused on workplace safety. Our goal is to keep our employees and our customers out of harm’s way.”

“For safety reasons, our trucks and related equipment are not intended to be used in the area in which he was operating, specifically around electrical wires. While our actions may not be popular, he potentially put his life and those around him in jeopardy.”

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Verizon also pledged to make a donation to the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Fishtown.

While Maurice was sent home without pay, two GoFundMe campaigns were created to help him during his suspension. At the time of writing, both campaigns have raised a total of $10,605.