I had an employee who called out on her SECOND day on the job and continued to call out once or more per week for each of the twenty some weeks she worked for us.
Firing took for-fricking-ever thanks to HR but I jumped through all their hoops because this constant calling out was absolutely killing all the other employees' morale.
My higher-ups were all chickenshit about firing her because she had a mental disorder and they feared discrimination suits. She thought she was untouchable due to this, so firing her using legitimate reasons threw a wrench in the center of her universe.
The day I got her termination papers ready, I called her into my office. She flounced into my office and before I could say a word, she spewed complaint after complaint that I was "harassing" her by repeatedly reprimanding her for calling out. She had a mental disorder. I was discriminating against her. I needed to accommodate her needs. Wahh wahh wahh the wahh-bulance has been called.
I said, "Well I have good news for you. You won't be 'harassed' anymore about coming to work. You're fired."
Watching her jaw drop was the sweetest sight I have ever seen.
She sputtered in horror, then shrieked that I couldn't do this! She had a mental disorder! You can't fire someone for that!
I pointed out that her disorder had been accommodated, but that the company required that she actually show up for work. Since she was constantly calling out, she was being let go for failing to actually... you know... work.
I cooly informed her, "We've done all that was legally required, and reasonable, to make your job possible in accordance to your disability. You are, however, required to meet us halfway. You refused to do so. Get your shit and get out."
While we were searching for a replacement, the rest of the staff got MORE work done less one employee than they did when the one bad apple was there.