Housekeeper who was paid £1.41 an hour and made to sleep in cellar wins over £50k payout from boss

Housekeeper who was paid 1.41 an hour and made to sleep in cellar wins over 50k payout from bossAn elderly housekeeper who was paid as little as £1.41-an-hour and forced to sleep on a chair in the cellar, has been awarded more than £50,000 in compensation. 69-year-old Julie Miles was reportedly forced to work 60 hour weeks, clean and cook at the Great Western Hotel in Abergavenny, Wales, was also not allowed to take a day’s holiday and was treated ‘as a servant’ by employer Gary Hesp. Miles who was vulnerable and had nowhere else to stay, lived in the laundry room in the basement of the hotel and ordered to cater to Mr Hesp’s every ‘beck and call’ 24 hours a day.  The Cardiff tribunal also found that the 67-year-old married manager sexually harassed the pensioner by sliding his arm around her waist on three separate occasions. Mrs Miles began working at the £70 a night hotel owned by Mr Hesp and his wife Loraine at the end of 2014, and as part of her role had to clean almost the entire property on her own. The housekeeper who also had to also strip beds, wash, dry and iron the bed linen, make the beds with fresh sheets, clean rooms, hoover and mop and clean the toilets in the bar, also managed the hotel when Mr Hesp who had a full time job as a bathroom salesman across Devon and Cornwall was absent.  Mrs Miles was paid between £84 and £99 after working 60 hours a week, meaning she was paid below the national minimum wage throughout the three years and five months that she worked at the hotel. Mr Hesp was also said to have deducted £80 a week for accommodation, but for over a year she was only provided with a chair in a cold laundry room in the cellar. When Mrs Miles asked for holiday, Mr Hesp reportedly said to her;   ‘We can’t spare you. You worked last year without a day off – you can do it again.’ Mrs Miles who resigned from her job in May 2018, wrote in her resignation letter;  ‘The unreasonable working conditions, scant help, long daily hours covering several departments, no day off or minimum wage for three years do not augur well for my future at the Great Western Hotel.’ Ruling on the case, Employment Judge Laura Jane Howden-Evans said;  ‘From December 2014 onwards, the relationship that existed between (Mrs Miles) and (her employers) was one of master and servant.‘It was only by (her) complying with (their) every instruction, completing work quickly, turning her hand to whatever was necessary to get the rooms ready and more importantly by being at Mr Hesp’s beck and call around the clock, that Mr Hesp was able to keep the hotel ticking over whilst working fulltime in Devon and Cornwall.’ Mr Hesp was found to have exploited his employee’s financial difficulties. The tribunal added;   ‘Mrs Miles perceived herself as being an older woman in a vulnerable situation and as such she felt demeaned by Mr Hesp’s unwanted conduct of a sexual nature.‘She felt trapped in a difficult situation as there was no one to complain to as her bosses were Mr Hesp and his wife and she believed that if she complained she would be ousted from the hotel and would have nowhere to live.’ In total, Mrs Miles won £55,194 for unauthorised deductions to her wages, compensation for unfair dismissal, money for holiday not taken and compensation for injury to feelings as a result of the sexual harassment.  The post Housekeeper who was paid 1.41 an hour and made to sleep in cellar wins over 50k payout from boss appeared first on Linda Ikeji Blog.
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