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Lloyds Pharmacy workers strike for union recognition

This morning, striking workers in a number of LloydsPharmacy outlets across the country went out onto the picket line as their campaign for union recognition, fair pay, a sick pay scheme, an end to zero hour contracts and improvements in annual leave and holiday payments continue.

“Pay scales are the biggest issue” said one of the striking workers outside their store in Clondalkin. Another woman working in LloydsPharmacy stated that she has “been working here for twenty years, but some of the new staff are on better wages.” Her colleague noted that they are “two years fighting for union recognition, but they still won’t talk to us”.

In an attempt to quell the disquiet that management has created by refusing to negotiate with the union, Lloyds Pharmacy created an internal staff committee, although evidently this has failed to appease workers. In what has been described as an attempt to undermine the union, the internal staff committee set up its own negotiations without the union, leaving the management essentially negotiating with itself.

As these workers stood on their picket line, many passersby took leaflets from them and their supporters highlighting the issues that they face. Jonathan Hogan, a representative from the Mandate Trade Union, said “that the most important message that we want to get across today is that we want the company to negotiate with the union.”

Also present at the picket outside The Mill Shopping Centre in Clondalkin was Workers’ Party representative for Lucan and Palmerstown David Gardiner. He claimed that “management has tried to undermine these workers by refusing to negotiate with the union, which shows the importance of as many workers as possible joining a trade union and organising in the workplace.”

Some LloydsPharmacy workers have joined the union in the wake of this strike in the hope that this will strengthen their collective bargaining power.

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