Dunes Stores workers are set to ballot over the coming weeks for industrial action due to issues over their working conditions.
Mandate, the trade union representing 40% of Dunnes 15,000 workers said the balloting process will take place in a few weeks and it will decide whether strike action will prevail.
The union said that this action is needed because the company failed to put last year’s Labour Court Recommendations in place, which were that the company would discuss the workers grievances with them.
The company has been criticised for using temporary and zero hour contracts and approximately three quarters of staff are on part-time flexible contracts. This leaves employees in an extremely vulnerable position as they cannot predict how much they will earn each month yet they are still expected to be available for work. It also makes it difficult for them to get mortgage or loan approval.
Mandate assistant general secretary Gerry Light told the Irish Times: “The combination of low pay and flexible hours means that many Dunnes workers cannot afford to provide a basic standard of living for themselves and their dependents. Many of our members cannot access mortgages or loans because of insecurity of hours due to low-hour contracts. Dunnes workers want to have their right to trade union representation vindicated, particularly when it comes to disciplinaries and collective bargaining. Key to all of this is the fact they don’t feel respected by their employer”.
A final decision on strikes will come after all members are polled in the coming weeks.