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Usdaw Members at JD Sports, Rochdale Fightback

Date: 01 August 2019 Retail and distribution workers’ union Usdaw has taken another step in its campaign for fair treatment of workers, this time in JD Sports, Rochdale.
Over 600 workers have signed up to a grievance to protest against the company’s attempt to slash rest breaks for workers on gruelling 12-hour night shifts. Union officials will meet with the company today to outline their grievance and discuss a way forward.

Usdaw has a similar campaign at the Burnley distribution centre of Boohoo, the cheap online clothing retailer. The union’s Boohoo campaign has attracted support from the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee, Burnley council, a number of MPs and the Ethical Trading Initiative, a body which aims to eliminate exploitative employment practices from UK companies and their supply chains.

Usdaw Divisional Officer Mike Aylward said: “More and more companies are treating their workers like disposable assets with little or no consultation with staff when making changes to work patterns. In this case JD want people to work from 6pm at night until 6am in the morning with just two breaks. People are in genuine fear for their safety as they’re forced to work through crushing fatigue and sadly, recently arrived migrant workers are often on the receiving end of this treatment. Usdaw believes such exploitative employment practices belong in 1819 not 2019.

"Similar battles are taking place across distribution as more and more employees demand the support of a trade union. In 2017 Usdaw was successful in securing a recognition agreement with discount retailer B&M Bargains which meant the union was the sole trade union for both retail and distribution workers.

"Staff at JD Sports distribution are joining Usdaw for an independent voice and to say enough is enough."

Notes for editors:
 
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fifth biggest and the fastest growing trade union with over 410,000 members. Membership has increased by more than one-third over the last couple of decades. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemicals and other trades.
 
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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