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McDonald's UK workers strike for first time

Monday, September 04, 2017 - 01:40

Fast food giant McDonald's is hit by its first UK strike as staff take action in a row over zero-hours contracts. But as Kate King reports, McDonalds argues the strike is over internal greivance, not pay or contracts.

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Broadcasters: MUST ON SCREEN COURTESY TWITTER/@RESISTUNITE / PART MUST ON SCREEN COURTESY JOE CAROLAN/ UNITE.ORG.NZ/ NO RESALE Digital: MUST ON SCREEN COURTESY TWITTER/@RESISTUNITE / PART MUST ON SCREEN COURTESY JOE CAROLAN/ UNITE.ORG.NZ/ NO RESALE**~ (SOUNDBITE) (English) STEPHANIE, STRIKING MCDONALDS WORKER, SAYING: "They didn't want to hear us before, so now we are going to be as loud as we can to make sure they can hear us this time." Taking a bite out of McDonalds public image. This is one of two UK restaurants where workers have gone on strike, for the first time ever. (SOUNDBITE) (English) UNKNOWN PERSON, SAYING; "Absolutely proud, fantastic turnout, history in the making mate." Around 40 staff are protesting over pay and work conditions. They're demanding an end to zero-hours contracts and a minimum wage of £10 per hour. McDonalds argues the dispute is over internal grievance, not pay or contracts. (SOUNDBITE) (English) STRIKING MCDONALD'S WORKER, TOM HOLLIDAY, SAYING; "I am absolutely proud of the people I work with, and the people who have come out today..." But Tom Holliday who gets 7.55 an hour - the minimum wage for a worker over 25 in Britain. Says that's not the case. (SOUNDBITE) (English) STRIKING MCDONALD'S WORKER, TOM HOLLIDAY, SAYING; "..every single one deserves more,ok." McDonald's reported revenues of $24.6 billion in 2016, while Chief Executive Steve Easterbrook earned $15.4 million. Although not unionsed, the workers are being backed by the the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union. It's long highlighted what it calls 'exploitative' zero-hours contracts, which don't provide set hours annual leave, sick pay or pension. McDonald's employees around 85 thousand people in the UK. It's currently in the process of offering all staff the chance to switch from a zero-hours contract, to one with guaranteed hours. So far it says 86 percent had chosen to remain on a flexible contract.

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McDonald's UK workers strike for first time

Monday, September 04, 2017 - 01:40