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Grievance hearing committee reinstates Eastern Deputy Clerk Sue Gurley after alleged COVID firing

JONESBORO,AR- A grievance hearing was held this morning, leading to the reinstatement of a fired government employee.

Craighead County Eastern Deputy Clerk Sue Gurley was fired on Monday by Circuit Clerk, Candace Edwards, for allegedly breaking COVID-19 policy.

Although Craighead County Judge Marvin Day says there is no COVID policy in place that can lead to such a firing.

Today’s hearing was with the county grievance committee on whether Gurley termination was valid.

Gurley said she was never contacted by contract tracers as a close contact after visiting a coworker who was out due to heart surgery.

Edwards stated this was not the first time her and Gurley have had a conversation about following COVID guidelines.

“It made me realize that she couldn’t take into consideration the feelings of others and that also that she couldn’t make the rules that we had given and apply them at this point in time. I believe she even stated that she had read and understood the policies, posters, rules that had been given to her. If she understood them and did them, the fact that she did not apply them to herself gave me a lot of questions on her judgment,” Craighead County Circuit Clerk, Candace Edwards said.

In the termination letter Gurley received a policy reminder October 1 telling employees how to reduce the transmission of covid-19 and how to prevent it.

Edwards says the reminder specifically tells employees to stay home if symptomatic.

She says Gurley was in direct violation of the ADH quarantine policy.

After hearing both sides Committee Chair Richard Rodgers, announced the committee voted to reinstate Eastern District County Clerk Sue Gurley

“I feel like I’m an asset to the Eastern District. I’ve recently even been elected again for another term, so I have the rest of this year and next year to finish that term. That’s all I want to do, is just finish my term, do my job, service the customers that we have,” Eastern District County Clerk, Sue Gurley said.

After the announcement, Ms. Sue Gurley on a comment and says she is “Just ready to get back to work.”


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