1 in 4 retail workers are skipping meals, warns Usdaw

Around one in four retail workers are skipping meals every month to pay bills, a Usdaw cost of living survey has revealed.

The trade union’s survey which included over 5,500 members showed a drastic increase in food poverty as figures in February 2021 found one in 20 workers skipping meals, compared to the current one in four.

“This Government laughed at us when they partied through the pandemic and now they are now telling us that we are the ones who will have to pay for the pandemic,” Usdaw president Jane Jones said at Saturday’s TUC rally.

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“Make no mistake this is a crisis of their making, a Tory cost of living crisis. Ripping away at the social security safety net and ripping apart the fabric of our society. They are failing at every turn to take the action we need, urgent action to stop people falling into poverty.”

Jones condemned the government for “playing politics rather than governing” as the Conservative politicians are “sullied by scandal, doing nothing other trying to save themselves.”

As a result, Usdaw has called for a pay rise and new deal that “transforms” the social security system and gives workers decent pay and secure hours.

Jones added: “We cannot accept that workers are condemned to live on poverty pay; that they are not even guaranteed the working hours they need to get by from one week to the next.”

“Shopworkers, distribution workers, manufacturing workers, in constituency after constituency are watching. We need action and we need action now.”

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