Workers from a multitude of Trade Unions have held a solidarity demo outside of IKEA Braehead, demanding that the firm Reinstate Richie Venton and Reinstate Sick Workers’ Wages.
Representatives from the UCU, CWU, RMT, UNISON, UNITE, EIS, GMB, FBU, Usdaw, Clydebank Trade Union Council, and others have declared their support for IKEA workers – and staged a protest outside IKEA Braehead to make sure the bosses are listening.
Workers spoke to shoppers on their way into the store, who shared their anger and disgust at the way IKEA have treated Trade Union organisers in their store – and at the way in which the company has attacked wages for sick workers during the pandemic.
Richie Venton, Usdaw Shop Steward and Convenor, has been sacked by IKEA for doing his job – warning those he represents that the company planned brutal and dangerous wage cuts for sick and isolating workers. Victimising Trade Unionists for doing what they are supposed to do is unacceptable, and a prelude to a larger attack on pay, jobs, and conditions.
IKEA plan effective cuts to pay for workers who have been absent, or to otherwise dump sick workers on the inadequate £95 per week Statutory Sick Pay – poverty pay conditions. Workers who cannot afford to be off sick are more likely to get sick, and more likely to spread sickness.
IKEA workers contracted to a minimum of 16 hours per week often work closer to 30 hours in reality. It is vital that IKEA pay the full average wage for sick workers based on hours worked, not the contractual minimum. It is vital that workers, everywhere, are paid their average in this way. Otherwise, sick or isolating workers will be facing a significant pay cut.
The protest comes after 24 MPs, including Jeremy Corbyn and Ian Blackford, added their name to Chris Stephens MP’s Early Day Motion, lodged in support of Richie Venton and IKEA workers.
Strathclyde UCU have called on Trade Unionists to add their name to a statement issued in support of the campaign to Reinstate Sick Workers’ Wages, which has been signed by UCU Vice President Vicky Blake and UCU General Secretary Dr Jo Grady.
The workers’ campaign to Reinstate Richie Venton and Reinstate Sick Workers’ Wages has been covered by the Daily Record, by Tribune, and by the award-winning Fermanagh newspaper the Impartial Reporter.
You have added thousands of signatures to the petition to Reinstate Richie Venton and Reinstate Sick Workers’ Wages – overwhelming support that makes clear the bosses cannot and will not get away with attacking jobs, pay, and conditions. It’s vital that we keep the momentum going.
You can add your signature to the secure petition by linking the link below. If you are an IKEA worker, you can be certain that your details are strictly private and protected.