// JD Sports workers sign up to a grievance to protest against reduced break times at Rochdale distribution centre
// The number of breaks during a typical 12-hour night shift has reduced from 3 to 2
Over 600 workers have signed up to a grievance to protest against sports goods retailer JD Sports, after it reduced the number of rest breaks for workers on 12-hour night shifts at the Rochdale distribution centre.
The number of breaks during a typical 12-hour night shift has reduced from three to two, although the overall time provided for breaks has remained the same.
“More and more companies are treating their workers like disposable assets with little or no consultation with staff when making changes to work patterns,” The Usdaw Divisional Officer, Mike Aylward said.
“In this case JD want people to work from 6pm at night until 6am in the morning with just two breaks.
“People are in genuine fear for their safety as they’re forced to work through crushing fatigue and sadly, recently arrived migrant workers are often on the receiving end of this treatment.
“Usdaw believes such exploitative employment practices belong in 1819 not 2019.”
Aylward added: “Similar battles are taking place across distribution as more and more employees demand the support of a trade union.
“In 2017 Usdaw was successful in securing a recognition agreement with discount retailer B&M Bargains which meant the union was the sole trade union for both retail and distribution workers.
“Staff at JD Sports distribution are joining Usdaw for an independent voice and to say enough is enough.”
A spokesperson for JD Sports said: “We have met with our colleagues and have considered their comments.
“We are now looking to meet with them as soon as possible to provide feedback and agree next steps.”