Subway Fires Good Samaritan

Corporate representatives of Subway were mum on the case. "It's an unfortunate situation," Linda Garrett-Coll of Canada-based Atlantic Subway Ltd. told CTV. But that's all she'd really say: "Technically, it's a personnel issue and we have no comment."

Mother Jones
June 10, 2010

Subway Fires Good Samaritan
Adam Weinstein


— Courtesy of

Sure, they got socialized medicine and cheap prescriptions, but there ain't no free lunches in Nova Scotia—at least not when you work for America's largest fast-food chain. Heide Heise, a full-time "sandwich artist" for a Subway in the Canadian city of Dartmouth, was fired this week when supervisors reviewed the store's closed-circuit TV and discovered that she gave two six-inch subs last week to a pair of patrons without collecting any money from them.

Of course she did: They were residents of her apartment building, which last Thursday was ravaged by a massive fire. The two men lost their home, and Heise was putting them up at her place. When they came in to thank her, she fed them, too.

"They showed up. I knew they had no food, no money and no where to live so I gave them each a six-inch sub I was supposed to write down as my employee meal," Heise told a Canadian news service. (Subway employees are entitled to one discounted foot-long sub as a shift meal.) "Because of all the stuff that was going on it totally slipped my mind to even write it down…Yeah, I just forgot to write it down and they fired me for it…

"I've worked double shifts when they asked me too, I've done everything they wanted me to, and I guess this is the thanks I get," she told CTV, which has video of the brouhaha.

Corporate representatives of Subway were mum on the case. "It's an unfortunate situation," Linda Garrett-Coll of Canada-based Atlantic Subway Ltd. told CTV. But that's all she'd really say: "Technically, it's a personnel issue and we have no comment."

This is, of course, the same fast-food chain whose idea of committing to eco-friendly values was swapping in a single low-energy lightbulb in every store. And who also rolled out its eco-friendly reusable bags for cookies, individually wrapped in useless plastic bags. (See photo above.)

The landlord of Heise's apartment, AJ Clark—who's clearly got a lot to worry about these days—is predictably hella-pissed: Besides the injustice of it, now one of his tenants has lost her source of rent money, too. Canwest reports:

"Since the fire, everyone's been in a scramble. She was more than generous to give up her apartment and then she goes to work and gets fired," Clark said.

So far, only tenants in 26 of the 74 units were allowed to return to their homes, Clark said.

He called Heise's employers to tell them he knew of local veterinarians who nursed pets injured in the fire and refused to charge.

Clark's calls to Subway's head office were left unanswered.

In trying times like these, I always ask myself: What would Jared do?

Adam Weinstein is a Mother Jones' copy editor. For more of his stories, click here.


1. Foot Long smack in the face!
Submitted by Just Jared (not verified) on Thu Jun. 10, 2010 6:48 PM PDT.

Atlantic Subway Ltd
148 Nautical Way Unit 101
Upper Tantallon NS
Phone: +902-826-1883
Fax: +902-826-1885

2. Subway Good Samaritan
Submitted by Woody McBreairty (not verified) on Thu Jun. 10, 2010 7:56 PM PDT.

Of course Heide's intentions were good and her heart was in the right place, but she was actually treating her friends at her company's expense and noone has a right to do such a thing without permission. I guess they figured if she is giving free food to these people, she probably does the same thing for others, and unfortunately they are right. I'm sorry they fired her, maybe could have given her a warning, but she is on the wrong side of right in this case.

3.She gave away her own food;
Submitted by leafsong1 (not verified) on Fri Jun. 11, 2010 5:55 AM PDT.

She gave away her own food; Subway claimed it inaccurately that it was theirs.

4. They ve got cameras, Soooo
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu Jun. 10, 2010 9:00 PM PDT.

They ve got cameras, Soooo she could be doing that with others as mention above. This whole thing is BS and her firing was and is wrong. After all that was her lunch that she gave away. They get a free 12 inc per day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5, unions
Submitted by Glen Stark (not verified) on Fri Jun. 11, 2010 12:14 AM PDT.

Man, more than any other sector of the economy (ours or Canada's), fast food workers need to unionize.

Submitted by louis vuitton monogram canvas (not verified) on Fri Jun. 11, 2010 1:26 AM PDT.

Hey that's wonderful information and I appreciate your work. I always believe that we should share these types of useful and informative article so that all the people can increase their knowledge and can solve their problems.

7. Meanwhile, a place burned down
Submitted by Fel (not verified) on Fri Jun. 11, 2010 1:53 AM PDT.

No doubt Subway will correct this wrong, and this is a pretty minor story, wholly understandable. The real tragedy, of course, is the fire.

8. Who cares!!! My boyfriend
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri Jun. 11, 2010 7:00 AM PDT.

Who cares!!! My boyfriend thinks the same with me. He- is eight years older than me, lol. We met online at an age gap dating site[ S E E K C O U G A R (C 0 /M)_]—-a nice and free place for Younger- Women and Older Men, or Older Women and Younger Men, to interact with each other. Maybe you wanna check out or- tell your friends

9. subway
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri Jun. 11, 2010 8:34 AM PDT.

In 2003, my granddaughter was abducted from a parking lot in Lafayette, La. She was savagely beaten and raped. When she returned to her job at Subway, instead of finding support and compassion from her employer, she was fired. Boycott Subway! ving%20free-sandwich-canada

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