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Heart Unions Week: Usdaw's New Deal for Workers campaign is as important as ever in the midst of a cost of living crisis

Date: 16 February 2022 Retail trade union Usdaw is celebrating achievements for members during Heart Unions Week, highlighting the benefits of trade union membership. Usdaw’s New Deal for Workers campaign was launched during the pandemic with the aim of delivering improved pay and rights for workers who quite rightly received widespread recognition of their important role in our communities.
Paddy Lillis – Usdaw General Secretary says: “During the coronavirus crisis, millions of workers stepped up in the most difficult of circumstances to keep our country going. They adapted to huge changes in an extremely short time, working under intense pressure and providing a lifeline to our communities.
“Usdaw supported members throughout the pandemic and we also looked to the future, after Covid-19, by initiating a campaign for the Government and employers to recognise that too many workers have been undervalued for too long. We have made some gains, with many more members now on over £10 per hour, improvements in contractual terms and legislation to protect shopworkers from abuse; but there is still a long way to go.
“If the country is to truly ‘build back better’ after the pandemic, there must be lasting and fundamental changes. We need a New Deal for Workers: a minimum wage of at least £10 per hour immediately, an end to insecure employment and action to ensure that retail jobs are no longer underpaid and undervalued. We are calling on the Government to urgently implement this New Deal for Workers as part of the Employment Bill that was promised during the last election”
Usdaw’s New Deal for Workers calls for:
  • A minimum wage of at least £10 per hour for all workers immediately, ending rip-off youth rates and providing a living wage.
  • Minimum contract of 16 hours per week, for everyone who wants it, that reflects normal hours worked and a ban on zero-hour contracts.
  • Better sick pay for all workers, from day one, at average earnings.
  • Protection at work – respect for shopworkers, abuse is not a part of the job.
  • A proper social security system, Universal Credit does not provide a safety net.
  • Job security, with day one employment rights for unfair dismissal and redundancy.
  • Fair treatment and equality for all workers, including equal pay.
  • A voice at work, stop rogue employers refusing to engage with trade unions and end ‘fire and rehire’. 
Notes for editors:
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fifth biggest trade union with over 360,000 members. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemical industry and other trades.
Heart Unions’ week: www.tuc.org.uk/heartunions 14 to 20 February 2022 highlights the positive contribution that trade unions make in workplaces and across wider society.
Join Usdaw: www.usdaw.org.uk/Join-Us
Usdaw’s New Deal for Workers Campaign: www.usdaw.org.uk/Campaigns/A-New-Deal-for-Workers
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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The official website of the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers