Matalan has infuriated warehouse staff and “strike action could be on the cards” after a pay row between management and factory workers ignited.
The threats of strike action come as supervisor staff at the brand‘s Knowsley facility were reportedly granted a £1500 pay rise alongside a two per cent increase.
The factory workers union GMB has responded aggressively to the proposed pay increase for warehouse staff, seeing a 3.17 per cent rise proposed. According to the union, for the 700 workers this would amount to around 20p over the minimum wage.
“Warehouse staff work just as hard as supervisors – and should receive comparable rewards,” the union’s Eddie Gaudie said.
“It really sticks in our members’ throats when they’re struggling to manage on their pay packets, only to see supervisors pick up a bonus and a pay rise.
“It’s up to our members now as to whether they will accept Matalan’s latest offering. If not, strike action could be on the cards.”
The union is set to ballot staff over the proposed pay increases, with the results set to be revealed on Monday.
In response to the criticisms, a spokeswoman for Matalan said the offer was “above standard cost of living increases for the region and are also above rates of inflation”.
“We are surprised and disappointed by the GMB’s decision to criticise this pay offer to staff,” she said.
“We greatly value all our staff and have worked very hard to make an offer that is fair and appealing in relation to other comparable businesses in the region.
“We therefore sincerely hope that the minority of our workforce in Knowsley who are members of the union will approve it.”
The news comes just days after Matalan reported sales increases of 21.5 per cent alongside a revenue increase of 1.3 per cent to £253.4 million.