Superdrug, 117 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3ER
Like many chain stores, Superdrug, who made a £20 million profit last year, have been given a massive public subsidy, in the form of unemployed people working for nothing but their benefits on a workfare scheme. Superdrug suspended their participation in the Government’s ‘Work Experience’ workfare scheme earlier in the year after Tesco was picketed and received a lot of bad publicity for using the same scheme, but Superdrug began using the scheme again from at least June.
This scheme is not only an attack on the unemployed, who are bullied on to the nominally voluntary scheme by Job Centre Plus, or are forced on to other workfare schemes for refusing to take part in ‘work experience’ that mostly involves stacking shelves for 30 hours a week for up to 8 weeks, and who face sanctions i.e. having their benefits cut in certain circumstances, while on the scheme. It is also a direct attack on Superdrug workers – replacing paid jobs, holiday pay & ending temporary posts.
Superdrug will no longer be taking on temporary staff to deal with the busy Christmas period. Rather than hire extra workers, Superdrug will be taking on more people on ‘Work Experience’ – workers Superdrug still don’t have to pay. Not only will this impact on those being exploited as unpaid labour, but on students & others who rely on holiday work.
The same number of people will be doing the same amount of work – but thanks to workfare, Superdrug can replace paid workers with unpaid ones. Once again, the lies of the government and businesses, claiming that workfare is a way to help people back into work, are exposed. The exact opposite is true – workfare is a job destruction scheme.
We call on Superdrug to end this exploitation and withdraw immediately from all workfare programmes. Any workers now working unpaid should be hired straight away.
The best way to end the iniquity of workfare is to directly affect the profits of the companies exploiting it. We have shown that it works – join us doing the same to Superdrug! Until Superdrug gives in, help us in fighting this attack on all workers’ terms and conditions.
The picket is part of a ‘Boycott Workfare’ National Day Of Action. They have information on other High Street stores that use workfare on their website:
Claimants Resisting Unfair Treatment Cuts and Harassment: a group of benefit claimants and supporters in Glasgow:
The starting time of the Superdrug Workfare picket is 11 a.m. as some places online are saying that the Starbucks demo starts at 12 noon and some people want to go on to the Starbucks demo after the picket and the 2nd workfare picket!
14:00 British Heart Foundation Furniture shop, Argyle Street.