“I was an art teacher at Sepulveda Middle School in the San Fernando School, Los Angeles District. On December 8, 2000, I was sprayed in my face with the toxic chemicals from a fire extinguisher by one of my students. I can no longer teach or live the same life.”
About me: My name is Rozy Press and I live in Woodland Hills, California.
My family: I am a mother of two grown children and a grandmother to two grandkids.
My Job and What Happened: After working for 17 years as a teacher for LAUSD, on December 8, 2000, I was sprayed in my face with the toxic chemicals from a fire extinguisher by one of my students. Following this accident, I have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, nodules on the lungs and fibro fog. Therefore, I suffer of memory loss, get exhausted after just a couple of hours, and am in pain constantly. LAUSD did not call paramedics for first aid. Plus, LAUSD did not call a Hazmat team for clean up of toxins. Now I am permanently totally disabled.
How Workers’ Comp was supposed to help me: Workers compensation insurance was to provide me with medical care to heal my injuries, help me return to work, and help provide relief from loss of income. After 13 years, I’m still injured, out of work, and can’t even play with my grandkids, have a social life or go to church as I used to, and I’m losing my house due to financial hardship. The AME apportioned my total disability to what he admitted was a misdiagnosis, but he did it anyway because it had been suggested to him by the judge. This was an injustice, because it reduced the value of my permanent disability compensation by ten times from what it would have been without apportionment. My workers’ comp case advanced to California Supreme Court. Is the workers’ comp system designed to prolong cases, or to restore the worker as soon as possible to the condition or close to the condition at the time of the accident?