Precarious work focus turning to hospitality and food industry

The General Workers' Union is turning its focus on precarious work in the hospitality and food industry, General Secretary Tony Zarb said during the biannual conference about the sector.

In recent months the union focused on precarious work in the cleaning, security and care workers sectors.

It has in the meantime received several complaints from those employed within the hospitality sector, including foreigners.

Mr Zarb mentioned a particular case where a restaurant owner did not pay workers for the first couple of days of their employment. He would then ask them to buy their uniforms out of their own pockets and fire them after a couple of weeks.

Even a five star hotel was employing people - especially foreigners - making them for abusively long hours. Others make it difficult for some to enrol with a union. This behaviour should be condemned, he said.

The GWU was prepared to tell MHRA who these employers were only if the necessary steps were taken.

He reiterated his claims of some days ago that the company is “toying around with work conditions” and insisted that "no lawyer's letter will shut our mouth"

Last week, Support Services Limited, which provides the services of care workers warned Mr Zarb to stop making insinuations about the company and said it would hold him responsible for any damages it may suffer.

This morning, Mr Zarb challenged the employer to give the said workers a copy of the collective agreement which it claimed improved their job conditions and noted that this agreement was reached with a union that had been set up by the employer.