GMB hits out at Wilko over 'savage' rota change plans for DCs

GMB hits out at Wilko over 'savage' rota change plans for DCs

The GMB union says that around 2,000 of its members at two Wilko distribution centres – in Magor, Wales and Worksop, Nottinghamshire – are taking part in a strike vote after the retailer tried to force staff to work weekends. 

It claims that industrial action could cripple Wilko deliveries to stores across the UK from 17th September. During a recent consultative ballot, more than 90% of workers said they were willing to strike over the rota changes, the GMB adds.

“Our members are angry – this new rota is savage. Management hasn’t stopped to think what these changes will do to our members’ health and safety – not to mention their family lives,” says Nicola Savage, GMB Organiser.

“Many people who’ve given years of loyal service to Wilko now feel forced out of the job. It’s not too late for management to listen to workers and get back round the table with us to work out a better deal.”

A spokesperson for Wilko insisted that a plan had been presented a plan “in collaboration with our team members which balances both the needs of our customers and our team members, to allow us to remain competitive in what are very challenging trading conditions”.

“We are disappointed that the GMB is calling a ballot but are committed to working in partnership with our team members to make sure they have all the facts before going to a formal vote over potential industrial action,” they added.

"Team members in our distribution centres already work weekends during peak periods, but we know our customers want to buy the products they need from us seven days a week,” they continued. "As part of our plan, we’re working hard to upweight recent recruitment activity, supported by local advertising, for weekend only workers in both Magor and Worksop distribution centres. The good news is that we’ve had a great response and from September can start rostering fewer team members into work at the weekends.

"We hope that our team members will choose to support the wider Wilko business as we finalise our move to consistent seven day working and encourage them to continue to talk to us and vote against any action."

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