Tesco staff to be balloted for strike

STAFF at one of Cork’s busiest Tesco stores are to be balloted for strike action over company plans to remove established terms and conditions for workers moving to its new premises.

Tesco management wants the workers at its Douglas store to transfer to the new facility on May 1. However, it has told a large number of staff it wants them to move on new terms and conditions.

Staff union Mandate said the company is trying to bully staff who have worked for the company since before 1996 into having the terms and conditions built up over the period bought out and replaced by worse conditions. It also wants post-1996 staff to forego established shift patterns for more flexible hours.

Mandate met with management at the store yesterday to discuss letters sent out to individual staff on Good Friday telling them they had to sign the new terms by last Tuesday or face redundancy.

After that meeting, Lorraine O’Brien of Mandate said the company had refused the union’s requests to withdraw the letters even though they effectively signalled staff dismissal by April 30 if the workers did not sign up.

Management refused to avail of third party institutions such as the Labour Court or Labour Relations Commission because it wants to have the issue resolved before the move.

Tesco has said it wants to press ahead with the store opening, claiming it will allow the company to offer a better service to its customers and also provide more jobs for the area.


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