In January 2021, following a successful action to win back unpaid bonuses, workers at a factory owned by Next formed a new branch of the FTZ&GSEU trade union. Workers reported intimidation, threats and discrimination, but stood firm and now nearly half the workers are members.
Despite multiple requests from us and War on Want, Next have still not recognised and engaged with the workers’ trade union.
Next’s failure to recognise and engage with the trade union is a flagrant display of disrespect for their workers’ rights. Next is falling below its own published Principles for workers’ rights and they should be accountable for this.
It is time we go public on this and we need your help to hold Next accountable.
In December 2020, before the trade union branch was set up, the workers walked out over unpaid bonuses – money workers rely on as their poverty wages are not enough to survive on. As a result of this collective action, Next agreed to pay up.
Worker’s must be able to form unions in order to negotiate with their employers. It is essential in the fight for better working conditions for garment workers that Next formally recognises and engages with the workers’ union, respecting and not undermining their right to collective bargaining through a trade union they have freely chosen to join.
Tell Next to abide by their own stated policies and agree to act on them by recognising trade unions and engaging in collective bargaining. Take action and email Lord Wolfson, Next’s chief executive, asking him to formally recognise and engage with the trade union.