Psychological Assessment & Intervention Services hit with lawsuit

By Kyla Asbury | Nov 26, 2013

HUNTINGTON -  A woman is suing Psychological Assessment & Intervention Services Inc. after she claims her employment was wrongfully terminated.

Dale Rice was also named as a defendant in the suit.

On Aug. 1, 2011, Stephanie Williams was hired by PAIS as a behavior support professional and worked for 18 months in that capacity, according to a complaint filed Nov. 12 in Cabell Circuit Court.

Williams claims she never received any warning or disciplinary action during her 18 months of employment with PAIS and on Jan. 18, she participated in an incident report committee meeting with Rice and other employees at the Barboursville PAIS office.

During the meeting, Rice reviewed the previous month's incident reports concerning PAIS clients and while discussing a client who was diagnosed with Schizophrenia, Rice became aggravated that a bed alarm was not being used to prevent the client from wetting her bed, according to the suit.

Williams claims she stated that the bed alarm was not being used because the alarm frightened the client and explained that the client was her own guardian and under the law, PAIS cannot violate a client's rights without first receiving permission from the Human Rights Committee.

Rice asked to meet Williams in a separate room after a short break and during the meeting, angrily pointed at Williams and stated she should pack her bags because she was done with PAIS and had lied to him, according to the suit.

Williams claims that she repeatedly asked for an explanation, but was not given one and Rice walked out of the room.

Rice regularly failed to follow state guidelines and policies and Williams did not receive any separation papers from PAIS until several weeks following her termination, according to the suit.

Williams claims the defendants violated the West Virginia Human Rights Act and retaliated against her when she refused to disobey the polices of the West Virginia Department of Health & Human Resources.

Williams is seeking compensatory and punitive damages with pre-judgment interest. She is being represented by Abraham J. Saad of Saad Law Office.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge David M. Pancake.

Cabell Circuit Court case number: 13-C-852

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