The trade union Usdaw, which is striving to gain recognition for Boohoo workers, has welcomed the support of Burnley MP Julie Cooper who has secured a meeting with the online retailer at its site in the town.
As revealed in the Burnley Express, Burnley's biggest private sector employer Boohoo has been accused of blocking union recognition, despite a recommendation from Parliament.
The online retail giant, which employs around 1,000 people at its site in Widow Hill Road, was described as "shameful" by union Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) which says it is being ignored by the company and this week refused to meet union representatives.
Mike Aylward, Usdaw divisional officer, said: “We are grateful to Julie Cooper for meeting with us and giving her support for our members and all workers at Boohoo. It is a positive step forward that the MP has secured a meeting with the company and we hope that she can encourage Boohoo into seeking a sensible way forward.
“It is not acceptable that the company continues to claim to speak on behalf of their employees by saying they have no interest in joining a trade union. A modern ethical trader should allow their staff to speak for themselves directly to Usdaw and as an independent trade union we should be allowed to fully represent our members in the business.
“Julie Cooper joins a growing list of organisations who are calling for Boohoo to engage with Usdaw, including Burnley Council, Parliament’s Environmental Audit Committee and the Ethical Trading Initiative.”
Last week Coun. Mark Townsend, Burnley Council Labour Group Leader, secured overwhelming and cross-party support from Burnley councillors for his motion, urging the online clothes retailer Boohoo to engage with Usdaw. The union is continuing its campaigning in Burnley and Manchester.
Julie Cooper said: “I am disappointed that Boohoo has so far not engaged with Usdaw in line with the recommendations of my colleagues on the Environmental Audit Committee. I will be meeting with Boohoo as part of my efforts to find a way forward that gives workers the protections that they deserve and allows businesses to continue to thrive.”