Hotel du Vin sued by employee for constructive dismissal and race discrimination

A former employee is suing Hotel Du Vin after the way it handled an attack on him by a customer.

Mieczyslaw Ratayczyk, 28, a former bistro manager at the Birmingham hotel, said he was hit across the face by an angry customer but claimed he received no support from the hotel management, according to the Birmingham Post.

He was subsquently suspended – but the customer was offered a free meal, the tribunal in Birmingham heard.

Ratayczyk is claiming constructive dismissal and racial discrimination, after he was suspended for two days following the incident last April. He is also claiming for loss of earnings and damages for personal injuries.

An intepreter told the tribunal on behalf of Ratayczyk: “Having suffered deep humiliation and distress I was extremely upset that I was suspended.

“Even more surprising was Mark (Davies, general manager) suggesting that suspending me was for my own protection in case (the diner) visited the hotel again.”

He added: “This feeling of betrayal was further compounded upon learning that the customer and his guests had been offered a complimentary meal and bottle of wine.”

The interpreter continued: “I do not believe these were the actions of a management team wanting to support a senior member of staff rather confirming to the customer that his actions were acceptable. This was a message to me and other staff that despite being the victim I was in the wrong for something out of my control.”

Ratayczyk told the tribunal the incident would have been “handled differently” had it involved an English employee.

He has since returned to live and work in Poland.

A hotel spokesman claimed Ratayczyk was claiming money from the company after trying to take advantage of the situation. He allegedly tried to gain evidence of the incident in writing to use for future litigation, he added.

The case continues.

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