Primark workers strike this weekend - Don’t cross picket lines!

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Workers at Primark stores in Northern Ireland are to strike this weekend. USDAW union members voted overwhelmingly for industrial action in protest at the company’s decision to impose a two-year pay freeze. Union representatives at Primark met last week to confirm industrial action by staff following a ballot which showed 88% of members in favour of going on strike.

Breaking News : the picket has been postponed due to management offer.

All of Primark’s eight stores in Northern Ireland will be picketed on both Friday and Saturday by Usdaw members.  The union said the strike is the result of Primark’s failure to offer staff a pay rise for the past two years, despite the company making profits of £644m between September 2009 and September 2011 and sales in the store continuing to increase. Primark is not alone when it comes to high street chains and bosses using the recession to erode workers rights and conditions, yet we are constantly told to share the pain even though they didnt share the wealth.  

The demand for a living wage by Primark workers along with cuts to housing benefits, pensions and jobs, is in stark contrast to our local politicians who have been rewarded by an 'independent' review panel with a 11% pay rise which amounts to an increase of 5,000 to begin next year. A MLA's basic pay(excluding expenses and allowances) is currently £43,101 and MLAs who are committee chairs get another £11,331, while deputy chairs get an extra £5,667.

The WSM urges people to attend picket lines across the country in support and solidarity as a victory for the striking primark workers is victory for all workers. We will be reporting live from the picket lines in Belfast and Derry using Twitter.

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