FIRST UNION MEDIA RELEASE
Workers at Pak’N’Save Henderson still waiting on pay agreement as store closure approaches
FIRST Union members at Pak’N’Save Henderson, which is due for closure by the coming weekend before being demolished and eventually rebuilt, are taking partial strike action this week in a last-ditch attempt to reach a fair Collective Agreement that was promised to them earlier in the year and then withdrawn, FIRST Union said today.
“It’s heart-breaking that in the last week of some of these workers’ jobs, they are still having to fight to ratify an agreement that was promised to them months ago,” said Tali Williams, FIRST Union Secretary for Retail and Finance.
“But far from being broken-hearted, these members are angry and energised – some of them have been with Pak’N’Save for years, and instead of getting a thank-you with their redundancy, they feel like they’re getting a middle finger for their years of service.”
Members at Pak’N’Save are taking partial strike action (activities constituting industrial action without the withdrawal of labour) and requesting that Foodstuffs’ management step into the impasse, as they have lost faith in Henderson franchise owner Mr Rayner Bonnington, who they hold personally responsible for scuppering attempts to bargain in good faith and reach an Agreement that was initially promised to staff in July 2019.
“The workers are feeling pretty gutted, to be honest,” said Ms Williams. “They’re in disbelief that an employer they’ve been with for so many years would just turn his back on staff because the supermarket’s being demolished and he thinks he can cut and run.”
“It seems really negligent and cruel to take a fair agreement away from them when many are facing redundancy and feeling a lot of uncertainty about what’s going to happen next in their working lives.”
“Members are keen to show Pak’N’Save that they do still have something to lose – their reputation – and it would be so much easier to live up to their end of what was agreed three months ago, showing workers the tiniest bit of gratitude for all of their work over the years.”