The document sets out the issues workers face from racism, the experiences of Usdaw members, Usdaw’s achievements and future plans, along with the action we need from employers and Government, which includes:
- Introducing mandatory ethnicity pay gap reporting.
- Strengthening employment rights and tackling insecure work.
- Extending the duty to conduct equality impact assessments.
- Commissioning an independent inquiry into the disproportionate impact of Covid on BME communities.
The full statement is available here
Addressing conference delegates, Dave McCrossen – Usdaw Deputy General Secretary said:
“I want to start by really emphasising the word together, because we all have a part to play in challenging racism. We have a duty and a responsibility, to call it out wherever we see or hear it; whether it's in our workplaces, in our communities and, of course, in our own union. Racism undermines the solidarity we work so hard to forge.
“We know that during the Covid pandemic, racism had a direct and devastating impact on many of our Black and Asian members, who were five times more likely to be working in jobs where they weren't protected by collective agreements, who didn't have access to company sick pay, adequate PPE or maternity rights and who were far less likely to feel confident about raising issues of concern with their manager.
Workplace racism remains a serious issue despite over forty years of legislation aimed at tackling it.
“We have to be actively anti-racist if we want to create workplaces that are safe for everyone and where we all feel we belong. Usdaw has a strong track record of campaigning against racism in the workplace. Our ‘No Room for Racism’ campaign has supported hundreds of reps to raise the issue in their workplaces.
“Our sponsorship of the anti-racist charity Show Racism the Red Card continues to support our efforts to both educate and inspire Usdaw members to become actively anti-racist. Whether you are a professional footballer, a shop worker or a food production worker, you have the right to go to work without suffering racist abuse.
“I strongly support this NEC statement and urge reps and members to become a loud advocates in the fight against racism. Wherever it rears its ugly head. Unions must be at the heart of the struggle for racial justice. Usdaw certainly will be.”
Notes for editors:
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers)
is the UK's fifth biggest trade union with around 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.
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news
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