A 24-year veteran of the New York City Department of Sanitation was forced to quit his job and fined $1,500 after he was caught accepting a $20 tip for removing a heavy load of trash in front of a single-family home.
A ruling made public Monday forced 56-year-old Lenworth Dixon to retire from his job since it is a violation of the city's ethics rules for civil servants to accept tips for doing their jobs, according to the New York Daily News.
Dixon was reportedly asked to remove a large amount of wood, furniture and other items in front of the home on Sept. 26 when he was caught taking the gratuity, officials reportedly said.
[sharequote align="center"]“It is a harsh punishment, but they don’t tolerate taking money from the public."[/sharequote]
“It is a harsh punishment, but they don’t tolerate taking money from the public,” Harry Nespoli, president of the Sanitation Workers Union, told the Daily News.
According to Nespoli, cameras are often installed on garbage trucks to keep an eye on employees.
“We’re not allowed to take any money, even at Christmas time,” Nespoli reportedly said. “We don’t work for the post office.”
This is not the first time a sanitation worker has been forced to quit for accepting a tip. According to the Daily News, two other veterans have previously been terminated for the same violation.
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