Fast-food workers fired on Facebook

PAUL EASTON
Last updated 05:00 27/01/2014

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Two young women have been fired on Facebook after new owners took over a Wellington fast-food shop.

Taryne Cullen, 20, worked at the Pita Pit in Featherston St for a year while a student at Victoria University. After being away for a knee operation, she tried to return to work this month, with the store under new management.

She checked the roster, which was held on a private Facebook page.

"When I saw my name wasn't on there, I contacted the new owners," she said.

A few days later she was told - on Facebook - that there was no room for her.

"They just said 'you don't have a job anymore'. I felt brushed aside, like I was no-one."

Brooke Adams, 19, said she was fired with one day's notice after working for a year and eight months. She had also checked the in-store roster, and found her name was not on it.

"They didn't even have the courtesy to tell me."

Another woman, who did not want to be identified, also found her name was not on the Facebook roster. When she contacted the new owners, she was told she didn't have a job, and to bring in her uniform.

She had worked for the franchise for three years and was considering going to the Employment Relations Authority.

Employment lawyer Susan Hornsby-Geluk said that even if an employee signed a casual contract, it could evolve into permanent status if the pattern of work was ongoing and regular.

In such a case, the job could not be terminated without a formal notice period and explanation.

Pita Pit owner Wayne Cui said he was new to running the franchise and accepted things could have been done better.

"If they want to talk to us, the door is always open," he said.

UNSOCIAL MEDIA

October 2013: IT consultant Jarrod Hook lost a claim against Stream Group after calling his manager a dickhead on Facebook.

June 2012: Beauty therapist Ammy Hull sacked from a hair salon for breaching her contract by also taking clients at her Auckland home. She was found out after leaving her Facebook page open at work.

March 2011: Bruce Taiapa of Gisborne took sick leave claiming an injured leg. He lost his job after his boss saw Facebook photos of him taken at a waka ama championship when he was supposed to be recuperating.

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- Fairfax Media

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