A Christian worker was fired for refusing to work during Sunday service
Former employee of Sainsbury's Jacqueline Rendell is suing the supermarket chain for "unfair dismissal" alleging she was fired for refusing to work on Sunday mornings so she could attend Sunday services at church.
Mrs Rendell had been working at Sainsbury’s in Whitstable for 20 years when, in October 2021, “Sainsbury’s engaged so-called ‘fire and rehire’ tactics – a practice in which an employer dismisses a worker and offers them a new contract on different, often less-favourable terms.” reads Kent Online news website.
In the new contract she was offered, Rendell had no possibility to attend the Sunday service. She proposed a job share arrangement with a colleague to allow her to go to church, but this was rejected by Sainsbury’s management.
Since then, she has been trying to prove in an employment tribunal that she was unfairly dismissed from her position as a commercial assistant in an attempt to get her job back.
During a hearing last week, Sainsbury’s representatives said that the schedule change was necessary due to staff shortages and that budget constraints prevented them from hiring at the time. Alternative roles were also offered to Mrs Rendell, but she claims none of the proffered jobs were suitable.
Judgement has been reserved and is expected to be issued in the coming weeks.