A BARMAID with Covid claims she was sacked after a manager insisted that showing symptoms of the virus was not an “acceptable” reason to be off work.
Rachael Baylis had been working behind the bar at The Walrus in Brighton for three months before she developed a cough and a fever.
The 22-year-old took a lateral flow test the day after she developed symptoms, that was negative.
But to be on the safe side and to protect other members of staff, she arranged a PCR and decided to isolate until she’d received the results.
然而, emails that she says are from her boss show him demand she work as normal that evening – until her PCR test result comes through.
Rachael said her boss told her showing symptoms wasn’t an “acceptable” reason to not turn up her for shift.
Furious Rachael offered her notice of resignation, however the messages appear to show her manager refusing to accept and instead sack her for “showing a clear lack of respect” towards management.
Government guidance says anyone with a high temperature, 新的, continuous cough or loss of smell or taste to “self-isolate straight away and get a PCR test”.
The results of her PCR test have since come back, and Rachel said she has got Covid.
The City Pub Group said they were “aware of allegations that the company’s well-established Covid-19 safety protocols were not followed” and confirmed they are urgently investigating the incident.
雷切尔, from Worcester, 说: “I wasn’t upset or sad, I was just angry. How can they get away with this? How can they force sick staff to come in?
“It’s a public health concern. They don’t respect sickness and health – I couldn’t get out of bed and they wanted me to go into work.
“I wasn’t going to risk other members of staff and customers.”
The manager’s messages state the reasons for firing Rachael were that she showed lack of respect for management, had threatened to walk out of her shift the day before, and sat outside before her shift had finished.
Rachael began showing symptoms of Covid while at work on Tuesday and says she went outside to get some fresh air.
Emails between the pair show Rachael explaining that she wouldn’t be coming in to work to avoid infecting other members of staff and, after that was disputed, offering her resignation before she was dismissed.
Rachael wrote: “I am not personally comfortable coming in whilst unwell and with potential to spread to both customers and staff which would make staffing very difficult should all of us get it.
“I will have my PCR tests back tomorrow and I will try to find someone to cover my shift but I will not be coming in for the benefit of not spreading anything to the remaining team.
“If you still wish to understand my reasons then consider this my notice.”
Her manager responded: “I do not accept your resignation due to the below issues I was going to discuss with you in person today at the start of your shift before terminating your probation period.
“You have shown a clear lack of respect for management requests/procedures over the last week which reached tipping point last night.
“You threatened to walk out numerous times last night.
“Changed clothes and sat outside before you were told by the shift manager you could finish.”
Rachael said: “Lucikly I’m in a position where I could say f*ck this job.
“I’ve tried to follow as many rules as possible but it’s been hard to do that, financially.
“Because I work in a pub, I’m around people a lot and I’ve had to isolate a few times which has meant I’ve lost money. I’m glad I stuck to my guns.”
A spokesperson for The City Pub Group said: “The City Pub Group is aware of allegations that the company’s well-established Covid-19 safety protocols were not followed at our Brighton pub The Walrus, in relation to isolation arrangements for one of our team members.
“As a company we place paramount importance on the health and welfare of our colleagues and customers, particularly during the ongoing pandemic challenges. This takes precedence over any other considerations.
“We are now urgently investigating all aspects of this situation to understand precisely what has happened and what needs to be done in response.
“We do not wish to make any further comments on next steps until the facts of the case have been established clearly.”