Staff at a Palmerston North store have been left in the lurch after a "stocktake" turned into a sudden business closure.
One worker claims she was locked out of her job at Dollars and Sense with no notice.
Told that she wasn't needed at work because of a stocktake, Melanie O'Connell discovered the company she worked for was moving out and taking the stock out of the building.
"They were stocktaking all right, taking it out of the shop."
Mrs O'Connell, a casual worker at Dollars and Sense on Broadway Ave for more than 12 months, was told not to go into work last Friday.
"I thought something was wrong because a stocktake had been done just a few weeks before."
When she showed up at the store she found the doors locked and the windows covered up. She phoned the manager Lalita Gilbert and was told the business had closed.
Mrs O'Connell said she had no idea the shop was closing and had not been given formal notice.
She said Dollars and Sense operations manager Peter Byars from Australia was in the shop earlier in the week and told her some stock was going to Hastings and the company was leasing out the back part of the store.
"He knew then what was happening and he didn't have the guts to tell me."
But Mr Byars told the Manawatu Standard the store closed because it was not making enough money and the decision was not made until Thursday night.
All workers had been paid out what they were owed and all contract conditions had been met, he said.
"All the staff that were at the shop on Friday were told it was closing."
He did not want to comment on whether he thought the staff had been given enough notice.
He said he told Mrs O'Connell by phone on Sunday night that she no longer had a job.
Mrs O'Connell said she believed she was still owed money.
"I've spoken to an employment lawyer and I'm taking advice."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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