Costa Espresso supervisor wins £14ok payout after she used to be fired for taking jacket all through fireplace evacuation


A judge awarded Natalia Dudenko (pictured) £14,000 after determining she was unfairly dismissed from Costa Coffee in Edinburgh

A pass judgement on awarded Natalia Dudenko (pictured) £14,000 after figuring out she used to be unfairly brushed aside from Costa Espresso in Edinburgh

A Costa espresso store supervisor has gained a £14,000 payout after she used to be fired for taking her jacket along with her when a hearth alarm went off at a shop.

Natalia Dudenko ‘singlehandedly’ evacuated the ‘packed’ Edinburgh store in six mins – having to take away aged, disabled, and unsatisfied shoppers – and grabbed her coat because it used to be chilly and raining outdoor.

On the other hand, the assistant supervisor confronted an investigation and used to be sacked after her bosses claimed she took too lengthy in evacuating and that fetching her jacket amounted to gross misconduct.

Mrs Dudenko, 35, used to be accused of main a ‘puzzled and disorganised’ evacuation and placing others other people’s protection in danger when she used to be sacked by means of bosses.

Now, the married mother-of-one has effectively sued the espresso large for unfair dismissal, with a tribunal criticising the preferred chain for its resolution.

A pass judgement on dominated it used to be ‘unreasonable’ for Costa Espresso to conclude that six mins used to be too lengthy and stated Ms Dudenko retrieving her jacket merited a written caution ‘at maximum’.

The tribunal heard a hearth alarm went off on the retailer – situated within a Tesco superstore – at 3.03pm on November 23 in 2019, when the Costa used to be busy because it used to be a Saturday within the run-up to Christmas.

Seven shoppers ‘complained or refused’ or requested for refunds, some have been oldsters with small children in pushchairs, others have been ‘slow-moving’ aged or disabled individuals who required a strolling stick.

Mrs Dudenko evacuated the shop – which failed to have a hearth – by means of 3.09pm and later informed bosses she grabbed her coat after colleagues did the similar.

Mrs Dudenko stated: ‘I didn’t suppose it might take any additional time to snatch our jackets. It used to be chilly and it used to be raining outdoor – I assumed it used to be affordable.’

When she used to be brushed aside, a Costa investigation file stated: ‘Failure to take price and instruct team of workers successfully and successfully all through fireplace evacuation, which lead for your lack of ability to regulate the placement.

‘This ended in team of workers being puzzled and disorganised, not able to give a contribution against the evacuation and subsequently prolonging it.

A report by Costa compiled after Ms Dudenko was dismissed said she failed to take charge and was unable to control the situation during fire evacuation at the store in Edinburgh (file photo)

A file by means of Costa compiled after Ms Dudenko used to be brushed aside stated she did not take price and used to be not able to regulate the placement all through fireplace evacuation on the retailer in Edinburgh (record picture)

‘This in the long run positioned the group and shoppers in danger.’

Mrs Dudenko, who earned £10.28 an hour, complained she used to be being ‘singled out’ as she won the similar coaching as her colleagues who did not face disciplinary motion for buying their coats however misplaced her attraction.

Employment Pass judgement on Mel Sangster, sitting in Edinburgh, dominated that Costa unfairly brushed aside Mrs Dudenko and ordered the corporate to pay her £14,400 repayment.

Pass judgement on Sangster stated it used to be now not ‘affordable’ to sack her for accumulating a jacket.

She stated: ‘However the truth that Mrs Dudenko used to be probably the most senior worker on website online at the day in query, no affordable employer would have classified the behavior as gross misconduct.

‘The tribunal discovered that, at maximum, given the instances, this might have merited a written caution.’

The pass judgement on additionally stated Mrs Dudenko used to be proper to pause and assess the placement and that Costa used to be ‘unreasonable’ in concluding that six mins used to be too lengthy.

She stated: ‘No affordable employer would have made up our minds it used to be gross misconduct for a person to not get started a hearth evacuation right away, when her place used to be that she behind schedule reasonably (for seconds slightly than mins) to evaluate the placement and whether or not the strains of go out have been transparent, earlier than asking all of the shoppers within the retailer to depart by means of that path.

Natalia Dudenko

Natalia Dudenko

Ms Dudenko gained £14ok and says she hopes her tale evokes others to rise up for themselves

‘Had she failed to take action, she will have directed shoppers against a hearth or different danger.

‘The id of the most secure go out calls for to be assessed on the outset, which can essentially contain an overly quick lengthen.’

She added: ‘The tribunal discovered that Mrs Dudenko in a different way treated the evacuation of the shop as absolute best she may just within the instances, given the very restricted coaching she had won, the difficulties she skilled with shoppers refusing to depart the shop and the absence of any help in anyway from the opposite participants of team of workers on responsibility that day.’

Mrs Dudenko, who now lives in Bathgate, Scotland, is now a stay-at-home mom along with her nine-month-old child who says it is going to be ‘onerous to discover a new activity in a an identical place on part-time’.

However, talking after the verdict, Mrs Dudenko stated she hopes to encourage different mistreated employees to rise up for themselves.

She stated: ‘I’m thankful for my friends and family for his or her nice strengthen, it used to be large problem particularly as I didn’t have a attorney or help.

‘My case must be an instance {that a} easy worker can at all times end up they’re proper despite the fact that they stand in opposition to a large corporate like Costa.

‘No one must be handled like I used to be and I wish to inspire everybody to rise up for his or her rights and not surrender if they’re mistreated.’



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