A row over chicken nuggets ended with an employment tribunal awarding a man £5,000 after he was sacked over the incident.
HR adviser Steven Smith wasn’t happy with the three nuggets he received for £1.99 in his staff canteen, in September 2019, and had an altercation with the woman serving him.
Explaining his version of events, he said: “I showed nothing more than dissatisfaction at which said canteen lady should have offered to raise a complaint.
“However, she did not do this and instead antagonised me by stating if I wanted more I would be charged an extra £1 for 3 chicken nuggets.
“Due to further shock and dissatisfaction, I advised if I wanted a Happy Meal I would go to McDonald’s.”
The tribunal heard the 30-year-old reportedly shoved the meal back at the dinner lady before leaving the canteen and he was accused of acting violently which is what led to him being sacked.
However, he claimed he was ‘falsely accused’.
He said: “We are in this situation where I am being falsely accused, all because I have somehow offended this woman of which was not the intent as I showed dissatisfaction at what was presented to me not by whom it was presented.”
The canteen worker gave evidence at the tribunal for Scotland-based company Teleperformance Limited in Glasgow.
She said: “I knew he was angry by his attitude and by his tone and his language changed. He was not shouting but he was louder than he had previously been.
“I could tell by his face also. My stomach was churning at this.”
The tribunal concluded Mr Smith was unfairly dismissed as bosses failed to investigate the incident properly, and he was awarded £5,181.60.
Judge David Hoey, who headed the panel, concluded: “The sarcastic remark about a Happy Meal is not by itself abusive nor rude.
“The investigation that was carried out was one that no employer acting fairly and reasonably on the facts of this case would have carried out.”
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