Hi all...I'm new to CC and I was hoping maybe some of you parents can help me out. My parents are international and don't speak much English and not familiar with laws...plus I rather not tell them this until everything is situated or else they would freak out and never allow me to work again until I graduate.
I apologize this is so long...but I need help and feel threatened and don't know what to do.
Over winter break, which started 12/20, I was told about a part time "gig" from a friend who found it on Craigslist. She worked lots of stuff from Craigslist over the summer and I trust it to an extent, so I decided to give it a try. I send an email to the person who posted and got more information about the job...it was an independent contracting job that just required me to walk around in neighborhoods and put door hangers on homes (unless they had no soliciting signs). Easy enough, so I decided to go for it and worked on 12/22. Not much pay...but it was a nice amount for easy work and would come in handy whenever I get paid.
The guy in charge asked if I was familiar with the area we were hanging the hangers in and I said yes...and he asked me if I would be willing to act as a "supervisor" of sorts. All I would need to do is delegate which worker went into which neighborhood, make sure they took a GPS tracking device (which is how the company keeps track of the workers making sure they did their job) and collect the paperwork from all the workers (W9 and Contract Agreement). There were only 5 workers total the first day...two of them were related. They signed the contract and did a nearby neighborhood together. One of the terms of the contract was to return the GPS device to the "base" station where we all met up at the start of the day. While was working my neighborhood...my cell phone was in my backpack with door hangers and I didn't hear it ring since it was windy outside. The two related workers finished hours before myself and the other two workers, and tried getting in touch with me while I was working but I did not hear their call. They left with the GPSes. Since that work day, I have been making calls to the one who took both of the GPSes trying to get it back, but to no avail. He says he has no car, so I cave finally and drive to the next city over to his home when he says he's available. The days I go, I call when I am nearby and he is not there or "just left his house".
I continue calling this guy, just saying I don't want any trouble, just want the GPS back so everyone who worked can get paid. All the equipment must be sent back to the company's headquarters, along with the contracts. The contract states that if a contractor does not return the GPS, which is company property, they may be charged $200 and/or the proper authorities will be contacted to get the property.
After another week of getting the runaround from this guy, and leaving messages but getting no returned calls...I call the other person related to him. I say that her name is put down for one of the GPSes, so she is held responsible, and since they are related I figure she may be able to contact the first guy easier than I can. I tell her what I told the first guy...they are their responsibility, they signed the contract, they can be held accountable and may be charged or authorities may be contacted.
She seemed to cooperate...until I got another phone call today. It was a woman (calling from a cell phone) saying she was with the Police in their city and also related to the two who worked with me. I do not believe she is with the Police Department. She begins to raise her voice and yell at me over the phone very aggressively...asking me questions like it is the third degree...all which i answer calmly. She asks questions like "Why don't YOU drive out here to pick them up?" "Why is it their problem you don't have the GPS?" "It's been three weeks, why have they not been paid? Are you willing to pay them out of your pocket?". She is yelling at me VERY loudly, accusing me of being in the wrong. I try explaining to her that they signed the contract which states everything (obviously they didn't read) but she will not listen to me. She hangs up on me after a long time yelling, so I call her back to try to explain again how I just want the GPS, no trouble. She does not even believe that I have driven to their city to try and get the property. She still does not listen to me and threatens to call the police for harassment, and says that they are just going to keep the GPS devices.
I called the company in charge and have been calling them since the whole ordeal began. They just told me to continue trying to meet up with the workers, and just get the GPS devices so everyone could get paid. After today...I am unsure what to do. I certainly am not going to drive to see these two after that phone call...I feel VERY threatened. I do not feel safe seeing either of them. I also feel like I was being harassed by all the yelling and accusing.
Can they really call the police on me for harassing them? I am just trying to do my job so myself and the two other workers can get paid. These two problem workers are not likely to get paid due to violating the contract. Is there any action I can take against them? I don't know who the proper authorities are to get the GPS devices are...but the company should tell me soon who to contact. But is there anyone I can contact because of their anger and aggression toward me? And lying about being a police officer? Any advice on what should I do?
Again sorry this is so long. I certainly am not taking any more jobs from Craigslist just because some extra money would be helpful. I learned my lesson!