Almost everyone has heard of Citizens Advice, but far fewer understand the positive impact our work can have on people’s lives. The following story is based on typical events that we regularly see in Surrey.
Linda* contacted Citizens Advice when she had been sacked from her job. She was upset and felt that she had been treated unfairly. She wanted to check on her rights.
Linda had been employed by a local shop for nearly a year when her manager had told her that he would have to let her go. Linda had been late on several occasions and although her manager had discussed her lateness with her a number of times, she thought that she should have been given a written warning and another chance.
Linda had been dismissed verbally and given a month’s notice. Her written contract only covered pay and holiday entitlement and did not cover notice and dismissal.
The adviser explained to Linda that since she had been employed by the company for less than two years, she had very few employment rights unless:
- She was trying to enforce a statutory right or
- Had been discriminated against in the workplace due to age, sex, religion etc. (for full list of reasons see https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/work/discrimination-at-work )
Linda accepted that this was not the case.
Further discussion about the implications of losing her job revealed that Linda, enjoyed her job which involved meeting different people every day, she lived alone and felt it kept her going. She accepted that her lateness was inconvenient for the company and that what she really wanted was to have her job back.
As a result of her discussion with Citizens Advice, Linda decided to write to her employer and apologise for the repeated lateness, assuring her employer that it wouldn’t happen again and asking how to make an internal appeal to try to get her job back.
The adviser invited her to come back if she needed more help, such as a benefit check.
*This is a typical story of a client’s problem, names and events have been altered for confidentiality purposes.
This is just one example of the ways that our charity helps local people everyday to overcome their problems. Our volunteers help with a wide range of issues. You can help people like Linda get the support they need by making a donation to Citizens Advice Waverley at casws.org.uk/fundraising. Your donation stays local and will ensure we are here to help people like Linda when they most need it.