Hugo Grrr George Fowler
Just days ago, checkout staff were national heroes. Mainstream media, government and celebrities praised them to the skies. We were encouraged to stand outside at 7pm and clap for them.
That was then. Today, there’s some sense the worst being over and moves back to normal.
So the ten percent bonus paid to Foodstuffs and Countdown supermarket workers during Level 4’s will be removed at Level 3.
“Many supermarket workers are telling us that they’re scared and stressed, overworked and struggling with rent, and the ten percent bonus from employers was one of the only things keeping them afloat,” First Union spokesperson Tali Williams has said. “There’s no such problem for the supermarkets themselves, who have quite simply been raking it in”.
KFC, Pizza Hut, Carl’s Jr and Taco Bell owners, Restaurant Brands ,are forcing their workers to reduce their hours indefinitely or be sacked.
Restaurant Brands said it would choose who would work, and how many hours, depending on each store’s needs each day.
Staff would be given two hours notice telling them whether they would be needed for a shift. However, even if staff were not needed they were required to be on call.
They could also be requested to work all, or part, of their shift at a nearby store that was short-staffed, the company said.
If New Zealand returned to Level 4 then all these changes would be voided, and new arrangements would be introduced. Staff had until 12pm on April 24 to accept the terms or face redundancy.
Restaurant Brands are also hiring delivery drivers for Pizza Hut and KFC as independent contractors, rather than employees, which means it wouldn’t have to pay drivers the minimum wage, sick pay or offer other employee protections. Restaurant Brands received $21.8m for 3651 staff from the Government wage subsidy scheme. You have to wonder what on earth they spent it on.
We’re told “Kindness is an incredibly powerful way to show we are united against COVID-1”. Someone forgot to tell capitalism.