Lapdancer can take club to court over her dismissal

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A £1,000-a-night lapdancer has been cleared to take legal action against Stringfellows for unfair dismissal after a judge reversed a ruling preventing her from doing so.

Nadine Quashie, who worked as a topless dancer in a G-string at the gentleman’s club for 18 months, is free to take the action after an employment appeal tribunal ruled that she had been directly employed by the Covent Garden nightspot, where she earned the equivalent of £200,000 a year before she was sacked in 2008.

Judge Jeremy McMullen, QC, overturned a previous employment ruling in November 2010 that Ms Quashie, a former university women’s officer, had been self-employed when she worked at the club and could not therefore bring the action.

Mr McMullen said that despite the fact that the mother from west London has not been paid directly by the club – earning her money from punters in the form of pre-paid vouchers stuffed into a garter belt – the terms of her employment meant she was legally one of its employees.

Stringfellows said it would fight the ruling and take the case to the High Court.

A club spokesman said: “We’re very disappointed by the decision of this judge. And we are obviously appealing immediately to the High Court, where our case will be heard in front of three judges. And we fully expect to have this judge’s decision overturned.”

Launching the appeal against the November 2010 ruling, Ms Quashie’s lawyer argued she had been an employee, as illustrated by the fact the club subjected her to numerous contractual obligations. Ms Quashie worked topless wearing a G-string at the club over an 18-month period, taking home more than £1,000 a night when it was busy. Her garter would be stuffed with pre-paid vouchers from clients.