Jay El-Leboudy, a 15-year-old from Canterbury, England, worked at his local Londis convenience store two evenings a week for ten weeks, only to learn that his employers were considering his position an "unpaid internship." It's hard to tell if this was an act of malice or a misunderstanding, though, since both parties are giving different stories. Either way, he better have stolen enough candy bars to make up for it.
Zoe, El-Leboudy's mother, says that she made an arrangement with the store owners in which Jay would "work on trial for a week," and if he did a good job, would start getting paid. The store owner, on the other hand, claims that he told Zoe upfront that Jay would not be able to receive compensation:
I gave her the fact that because he's not got a national insurance number he would not be allowed any sort of payment or anything from me. I need to tell the tax people. When he's 16 he would be allowed payment if there was a vacancy and if things work out … The Facebook criticism against me has been unjustified.
The story is made more dramatic by the fact Jay is family friends with the store owner. Zoe also claims that Jay was working so he could afford to buy his family Christmas presents.
In response to the situation, Zoe started a fundraising page to make up for Jay's lost wages. So far, it has collected £465 (around $700), far surpassing its meager £30 goal. She claims that she is receiving a lot of support from the community, because the store owners have done the same thing to other teens. Here's a PSA about the alleged scam that was recently made by a Canterbury resident:
So who's right? Did the store owners scheme Jay? Or are people getting swept up in a false narrative? And what type of convenience store is Londis? Do they have Slurpees? Do they drink those in England? The world demands answers!