Wilko staff holding vote over strike action over 'savage' new rota

Wilko distribution centre in Worksop
Wilko distribution centre in Worksop

Thousands of Wilko staff are taking part in a strike vote after the company tried to force staff to work weekends.

Around 2,000 GMB members at two Wilko distribution centres, including Worksop, are taking part in the ballot, which closes on September 3.

If workers vote to strike – industrial action could cripple Wilko deliveries to stores across the UK from September 17.

During a recent consultative ballot, more than 90 per cent of workers said they were willing to strike over the rota changes.

Nicola Savage, GMB Organiser, said: “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.

“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 spokesman from Wilko said: “We have 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.

"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.

"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.”