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Will i get the sack? What would you of done?

(16 Posts)
FireFaerie Mon 09-Jul-07 16:44:40

I work for a 'Super'market, on Checkouts (Got to start somewhere...) but i havent finished my '12 week trial period' yet.
Today it rained so heavily that the shop STANK of Sewage, it was so strong customers were complaining heavily but the regional manager refused to shut, Environmental Health turned up in the end, and the store was still open when i left to pick up DS. (How, il never know)
Thing is the smell was awful, i still feel physically sick, i want to complain about having to work in such conditions, (I did feel truly sorry for the customers too) i was ill after work and dont think il be eating today.
But Can I?
Can i complain?
Surely if i cause a problem i will just be dismissed at my review? Whilst i remain inside my trial period i can be let go at anytime with no reason needed for my dismissal, so i am told.
Am i Stuffed?

funkimummy Mon 09-Jul-07 16:49:07

They don't have the right to sack you or end your trial just because you make a complaint about the stench of sewage!

I have never heard of someone being 'let go' for no reason or for any reason within a 12 within your probation period.

If the situation is in hand because environmental health are now involved then the chances are it will be resolved and you won't have to make comment.

maisemor Mon 09-Jul-07 16:56:25

Is it worth the risk though? Chances are when you come back tomorrow it will no longer be stinking, and it will all be in the past. A good story to tell and all that jazz .

Seriously I would only complain about it if it was still stinking on my next shift. Chances are you will not be the only one complaining about it. The manager will have listened to complaints about for a few hours, so he will be aware of it and will be sorting it.

Also thing about what you want to get out of the complaint? What exactly is it you want the manager to do that he is probably not already doing?

If I was the manager I would be slightly annoyed if in between trying to sort this stinky mess out I had to listen to an employee complaining about it. I would probably think that you are just after a day off.

FireFaerie Mon 09-Jul-07 16:58:27

Thank you FM, Im possibly being to paranoid.
According to one of my supervisors there was a chap who got let go for phoning in sick 'too much' a few months ago, because he was still within his 12 week trial.
It may just be a 'story' but its kinda had me nervous ever since TBH.

funkimummy Mon 09-Jul-07 17:03:07

Well yes, phoning in sick too much would constitute someone being let go in their probation period. Chances are this person was probably taking the proverbial!

In any case, if someone was phoning in sick on a regular basis, and didn't have a long term illness or a genuine reason for being off sick (i.e a doctors certificate) then that could be deemed as reason for dismissal.

The Store Manager won't want to lose his customers so will probably be doing all he can to get the situation rectified!

Jojay Mon 09-Jul-07 17:14:19

They SHOULD have to show that they have issues with your performance you sack you within your probationary period. I'm sure as a large retailer they have procedures to follow, and making a complaint about a smell is not a valid reason for terminating your contract.

( I work for a national retailer too and have been involved in this process, though it's fashion retail, not food, but they tend to have similar policies.)

The person who was dismissed after phoning in sick a lot is a different case, and continued unauthorised absence with no evidence of sickness, ie Doctor's note, probably is grounds to terminate his contract


You could complain - I don't think it would affect your contract, but you have to consider what you want to achieve by complaining. The chances are they were doing what they thought was best in a very difficult situation. ( there would have been customer complaints if they had closed too)

If I were you I'd let it go as it seems to have been a one off. The rain has been exceptional lately, though obviously if things like that keep happening, then that's a different situation altogether.

Thelittlesoldiersmummy Mon 09-Jul-07 17:17:19

That happened at the Tescos near me the other week it was terrible! I kept thinking it was my DS who I am pottie training!

To be honest I wouldnt bother saying anything as there is nothing they can do about it now after the event I think I would have said something at the time.

flowerybeanbag Mon 09-Jul-07 17:51:44

There may be a company policy stating they need to give you good reasons for dismissing someone during their trial period but legally they don't have to give you a reason at this stage. You don't have rights to 'fair' dismissal in most situations until you have a year service.

It would be a bit daft of them to sack you just for putting in a complaint if they are otherwise happy with your performance though, and I would be surprised if they did.

I would leave it unless it becomes a persistent problem

RibenaBerry Tue 10-Jul-07 13:16:41

Do bear in mind that if you're sacking for raising health and safety concerns, the normal 'one year' rules do not apply. However, I would echo what others have said about thinking about what purpose a complaint would serve if the issue is now resolved.

flowerybeanbag Tue 10-Jul-07 15:11:41

forgot the H&S exemption, thanks Ribenaberry!

Whizzz Tue 10-Jul-07 15:14:23

I would leave it up the Environmental Health people, if they were called in & assessed the situation, it is their opinion whether the store should shut on the grounds of health.

FireFaerie Tue 10-Jul-07 22:07:55

Sorry i havent responded sooner, ive been at work, and guess what? No Clean up!
I am going to leave it as now ive calmed down and i suppose it isnt really going to make much difference if i speak up or not, but i just thought id update you wonderful people for giving me such great advice..
Basically i went in today to do a split shift. We are only a small store, and the little inset door mat at the entrance to the store is GROSS!! (Giving away which store i work for maybe) No one had thought to run the Rug Doctor over it.. after waiting 5 hours for someone to think of this 'genius plan' and being stopped at the school/in the street in my break by 3 parents/customers i went back to work for my second shift and suggested it to one of my bosses. I got a few grunts and maybes but no one seems to want to do anything about it.
I am going to leave it alone as the customers are pretty much doing all the complaining that needs doing to get something done about it, but just thought id let you know what i was going to do.
Thanks everyone!
Your advice was read thoroughly and all absorbed, and greatly appreciated
*Hides Alcohol that seems to of infected grammar and 'stuffs'*

chocolatekimmy Tue 10-Jul-07 22:11:30

I would question what you would be expecting to get out of a complaint - you always need to have a resolution. If its just about having a rant I would save it for someone else.

No they shouldn't dismiss anyone for complaining during probation period but remember, you are only safe against unfair dismissal once you have a years service.

FireFaerie Wed 11-Jul-07 11:07:48

Good Point, thanks.
I think i was more appalled by having to work in it, and that we are still selling fresh fruit and veg.. when the smell is still there even now.
I didnt 'want' anything, just a clean store to work in would be nice But i think it was just shock and the need of a good rant.
It is rather gross.
Oh well, im off to work now, hope it smells better today

funkimummy Wed 11-Jul-07 20:20:40

FireFaerie,

Get your friends / people who complain to you in the street to either go in and complain or write in and complain. That would perhaps get them off their arses!

Either that or get them to write to the store HQ. That often gets them shifting!

FireFaerie Wed 11-Jul-07 20:55:28

Have been doing that, thanks though FM. There isnt a great deal else you can say to a flock of people quizzing you about a place you arent in... lol
Sorry i didnt make myself clear enough earlier, the smell HAS improved alot since Monday, when it was actually so awful it made me ill, but its still there IYKWIM.
Its improving, and the problem is dieing down, i dont think i over reacted per se, just think i underestimated the sort of literal shit involved in going back to work
I thank you a thousand times for all of the help/rational thought/advice and everything else though

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