VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- A Burger King worker who was fired over 50 cents worth of food has been awarded $46,000 over the ordeal.
CTV News reports that Usha Ram, 55, was fired shortly after the incident, which happened in 2013. Ram, an immigrant from Fiji, had worked at different Burger King locations for 24 years and was the sole breadwinner in her family, according to the Vancouver Sun.
Ram reportedly had asked her store's manager if she could take home food at the end of her shift because she forgot her wallet. She said she was given permission and took home a fish sandwich, french fries and a drink.
In court, the owner of the franchise, Janif Mohammed, said Ram was given permission to take a sandwich without paying for it. But he said she was not given permission to take the fries or drink. He said that constituted theft, and she was then fired. He said the restaurant has a "zero tolerance" policy.
The judge in the case, however, ruled that Ram was fired over a "misunderstanding." She also determined that after employee discounts, the value of the food Ram took home was about 50 cents.
The judge awarded Ram $21,000 for lost salary and $25,000 in aggravated damages for the "unreasonable and unduly insensitive manner" of her termination.
The ruling stated that Ram did not try to hide the food as she left the restaurant and had no history of theft.