Staff at an Australian McDonalds have received a letter telling them they will not be able to use the bathroom on their shifts.
Hundreds of employees at McDonalds stores owned by Tantex Holdings in Queensland were warned that a push for a 10 minute break on shifts that are longer than four hours, which they are entitled to under law, will cost them bathroom and drink breaks.
Chris from Tantex posted a lengthy letter after he noticed a number of employees were ‘liking, sharing and tagging each other’ in online sources that told them about breaks they were entitled to, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
He started the note by saying that most staff don’t work longer than four hours, which means the 10-minute paid break were not of their concern.
However, he said that if the company was going to implement the breaks they are entitled to, they would no longer be able to have a quick bathroom or drink break at any stage of their shift.
The letter said ‘On your shift, this 10-minute break would be the only time you would ever be permitted to have a drink or go to the toilet. So I hope to God you don’t get thirsty on your next shift because we just wouldn’t be able to allow a drink. Fair is fair right?’
‘But as we go above and beyond for our people and we like to treat you guys much better than this, we allow ALL our employees regardless of shift length to have a drink of water as you require and go to the bathroom as you require.’
‘Are we really such bad guys? It actually works better in our favour to follow this legislation and keep you all working non-stop.’
The post has now prompted an urgent meeting with the union, who are hoping to take legal action.
‘No worker should be barred from the toilet, or access to clean drinking water, let alone the very young workers at McDonald’s,’ Retail and Fast Food Workers’ Union secretary Josh Cullinan said.
A spokesman for Mcdonalds Australia said ‘Everyone who works in our restaurants is given breaks as required. We work closely with our restaurants to ensure all our employees receive the correct entitlements and pay.’
‘Any McDonald’s employee who has a query or concern regarding their employment conditions is able to contact us through our dedicated employee assistance hotline. This allows us to work with restaurants to ensure any issues are addressed.’