River City Roll owner disputes former employees’ claims behind firing

Local News

"No employees were terminated from River City Roll for not signing the document in question"

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Employees at River City Roll say coworkers had to sign a waiver in order to work a parking lot party on Saint Patrick’s Day. While management said the waiver was to work voluntarily, some employees scheduled to work didn’t come because they were concerned. Then, they say they were fired.

After organizers called off Shamrock the Block as concerns grew about large gatherings and possible spread of the coronavirus, River City Roll held a parking lot party of their own.

“That is where they said they needed all of us to sign a waiver if we wanted to work that day. And if we did not sign a waiver our shifts were going to be forfeit,” Ellen Sonifrank said.

The waiver says the employee acknowledged they would volunteer to work on March 14. Plus, they were made aware of health concerns about COVID–19, and they would not hold River City Roll liable if that employee got the virus.

Nonnie Satin was scheduled to work but did not come because he was concerned.

“I have a roommate who is immunocompromised and I felt like it would be irresponsible for me to go to an event like this, let alone work it and deal with people’s like trash, napkins, glasses, stuff like that,” Satin said.

Ex-employees Mariah Martin and Erin Gray said they were also scheduled to work and did not show. Sonifrank did work, but says she was let go because she disapproved of the event on Facebook.

River City Roll owner Rob Long said “No employees were terminated from River City Roll for not signing the document in question.”

“The document was intended to provide all of our employees with an update and help make them an informed decision about the event and whether they wanted to work the event to ensure that everybody knew the gravity of an unprecedented situation, and that it was their choice to volunteer work,” Long continued.

8News asked Long why hold the event in the first place, with people gathering together. Long answered that the decision was made to provide employees income they need to pay rent and bills.

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