Wicklow Sinn Féin TD John Brady has accused Tesco management of “Behaving irresponsibly and illegally in ignoring the recommendations of a Labour Court ruling in February which said that the company was to introduce a two per cent pay increase”.
Teachta Brady said “As well as ignoring the Labour Court recommendation for 1000 of its 14,500 Irish workforce Tesco also plans to introduce unilateral pay cuts of up to 15% from April 18th and to change workers’ conditions of employment, work patterns and bonus payments.”
“No company can erode the rights of workers through a desire a merely streamline pay arrangements. The Tesco workers in question signed contracts pre-1996 and now the company has decided that this is simply a nuisance that they can write off with the stroke of a pen. Rather than reward the loyalty of these workers, Tesco would seek to cut their pay and sick leave entitlements. Claims by Tesco that this is about streamlining its systems deliberately ignores the reality that for many workers their conditions of employment will be made worse and their pay packets will be cut.”
“The Fine Gael/Labour government failed to legislate to protect workers, especially low paid workers, and has cleared the way for the extension of zero hour contracts and the exploitation of low paid workers. Whatever shape the next government takes Sinn Féin will be demanding stronger workplace protections for staff.”
Teachta Brady concluded “I would urge Tesco to rethink its current workplace strategy, negotiate properly with the workers union, and step back from what could be a damaging industrial strike.”