Our staff do make purchases in the restaurant for their lunches etc then usually take them to their staff room. Unfortunately we cannot ask them to wait until all other customers are served due to how busy the restaurants can get or they would not be able to get fed within their breaks When they are on their lunch breaks they are not working and therefore are on their own time and are a paying customer.
I work in a shop within a garden centre. Said garden centre has a restaurant.
This didn't happen to me, and never will, because, after this happened to TWO of my coworkers, I will never EVER be eating in the restaurant while in my uniform.
Last month, a co-worker (cw) of mine had a long shift so she decided to eat in the restaurant. It was busy in there and she had to wait a while in a long queue to get served. This isn't a problem. The problem is the fact that, when she went to pay for her food, which she'd got in a tray in front of her, she was refused and asked to wait until all the customers had finished being served. My cw asked why. The cashier told her this was because she was an employee and not a real customer. Understandably, my cw was livid. Cw tried explaining, albeit quite angrily, that she'd been waiting in line for over ten minutes, was on a break and she WAS a customer. But the cashier wouldn't have any of it. The cashier ended up calling over one of her colleagues and this colleague backed the cashier up. My cw insisted that she was a customer, but this other colleague told her that they couldn't serve employees until there were no other customers. My cw tried to explain that she didn't even work FOR the garden centre, that she worked in a concession shop.
Apparently she ended up getting her food. But now she brings her own food in because she refuses to eat in there. A few weeks later this happened to another cw of mine, so now we all bring our own packed lunches.