Posted on: Oct 16, 2012
An employee who, while she was on duty as bar manager, left the premises for only a few minutes to attend to personal matters was dismissed justifiably for serious misconduct.
The employee’s employment agreement provided that serious misconduct included a failure to comply with liquor licensing laws, and the law required that when liquor was being sold a manager had to be on duty. The employee sought to excuse her conduct by pointing out she had no rostered work break. The Authority observed the employer was not obliged to actually roster breaks and that in any case the obligation to allow a rest break did not extend to an obligation to permit an employee to leave the workplace in order to have the break (Broughton v Portage Licensing Trust  NZERA Auckland 179).
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