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Woman fired after eating leftover sandwich from meeting room exposes letter her boss sent her

Woman fired after eating leftover sandwich from meeting room exposes letter her boss sent her

She has filed an unfair dismissal claim against her former employer

A single mum has filed an unfair dismissal claim against the cleaning company she used to work for after she was fired for eating a leftover sandwich.

Gabriela Rodriguez, 39, was said to have been fired by cleaning agency Total Clean for the 'theft' of a tuna sandwich, which was due to be thrown away after a meeting at London corporate law firm Devonshires.

According to The Times, Devonshires contacted the agency to complain that the leftover sandwich had not been returned, who then dismissed Rodriguez - from Ecuador - from her £13-an-hour job.

Following a disciplinary hearing on 23 November, Total Clean boss Graham Peterson sent a letter to his former employee that has since been revealed by the Daily Mail.

Gabriela Rogriguez was fired from her cleaning job after eating a leftover sandwich from a meeting.
United Voices of the World Union

The letter read: "At the hearing your explanation was that you found a sandwich in the kitchen near the end of your shift and took it without giving it a second thought.

"You stated that previously the client had left food in the kitchen and offered it out, so you thought it was fine."

It continued: "I considered your explanation to be unsatisfactory because you confirmed that no one had offered you the food in the kitchen but decided to take it anyway.

"I have decided that your conduct has resulted in a fundamental breach of your contractual terms which irrevocably destroys the trust and confidence necessary to continue the employment relationship."

To add salt to the already gaping wound, Peterson also wrote that he'd considered a 'lesser sanction' than firing her but ultimately against it.

The United Voices of the World union (UVW) are supporting Rodriguez as she sues her former employer.

UVW general secretary Petros Elia said: "Cleaners are routinely dismissed on trivial and, we argue, discriminatory, grounds like this every day around the country.

"Many describe feeling treated like the dirt they clean, and Gabriela is one of them. She was dismissed by Total Clean but the law firm should not have complained in the first place. They wouldn't have complained were it anyone else who had eaten a sandwich - and definitely not if it was a lawyer."

The UVW Union is now helping Gabriela sue her former employer.
United Voices of the World Union

However, it has since been revealed that the law firm hadn't asked Total Clean to take action against Rodriguez for taking the sandwich.

A spokesperson said that the decision to dismiss her 'was taken without any input or influence from Devonshires whatsoever.'

They also added that wouldn't object to her working on their premises if Total Clean were to reinstate her.

A spokesperson for Total Clean told LADbible: "While we would not typically comment on personnel issues, we would like to address the misleading and inaccurate information that is being alleged by our ex-employee.

"It is important to us to maintain the integrity of our workforce and service by ensuring we deal appropriately with any actions that undermine the hard work and reputation of our incredible team who conduct themselves impeccably. Trust and honesty is of paramount importance.

"All steps taken have been in accordance with UK employment law following the proper investigative and disciplinary process. We will be making no further comment on the matter."

Featured Image Credit: United Voices of the World the union/Facebook

Topics: UK News