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Smoke room...

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
I work in Burger King as a "Crew Member" and recently came into some disagreements with the management there.

Three of us were cleaning up after we had closed, and all the usual cleaning tasks had been completed, we were then told by the supervisor that one of us had to clean the smoke room, which is approx a 3m by 3m room where people go-to smoke in their breaks, the room has little (if any at all) ventilation. As the three of us on the close were non-smokers, we all refused to clean it – as we didn’t want to damage our health. The supervisor then completed all the time-sheets and locked up the unit, and we went to get changed into our own clothing.

The Shift leader at the time then spoke to us after we had go changed, and told us we had got to clean it, we explained our reasons for not cleaning it and she refused to reason, saying “it’s not damaging to your health because there is no one smoking in there”, we then went on to explain the dangers of passive smoking and I outlined the law that states employee’s are well within their right to refuse to do a task if it is dangerous or damaging to their health.

She also stated that if we went home without doing it – we would be classed as “walking off shift”. I then told her that the time sheets had already been completed and we were now “off-shift” and I would not do work without been paid. She then walked off and me and the other 2 staff members went home.

On my next shift the manager of our unit had each of us in the office individually, and told us we would be disciplined for our actions.

I see this treatment as unfair, and am now considering leaving after over a year of employment.

Please can you give me any advice on how to handle the situation.


  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Well if you're in the US then I suppose you could sue them for something or other in relation to the law you cited. Im sure there would be a good case to make in this day and age of corporate crime and mistreatment.

    You might be able to sue in the UK too, I dunno, you should see a lawyer or solicitor depending on where you are.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Give these guys a call:

    WERAS Wages and Employment Rights Advice Service Helpline
    Telephone service for low paid workers, their advisers, employers etc. Offers information and advice on pay, employment rights, and benefits.
    Helpline: 0800 220823
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Each case is obviously different. It also depends on what the employer does. If they sack you, and you've been there over a year then you could have a case for unfair dismissal. If you've not been there a year you have no rights in this area at all. If they don't sack you, then the situation would be more difficult. You'd have to take advice about your options.
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