Thursday, 25 February 2016

Sunday trading laws to hit retail workers USDAW

Dear Mr JonesUsdaw are extremely concerned at the Enterprise Bill amendment to devolve the power to set the hours of Sunday trading to over 300 Local Authorities.

This would lead to a ‘domino effect’ with longer Sunday opening spreading across the country, having a detrimental impact on the UK’s 3 million retail staff and their families, on small stores, and on communities, as Sundays become like any other day.  Yet there has been:
  • No Impact Assessment published
  • No current economic analysis - but all existing analysis points to longer Sunday opening leading to an overall decline in retail jobs and in small stores.
  • No Family Test on the impact on families of longer weekend working.
  • Consultation responses have not been published - or even a proper analysis of responses for and against the proposals, and the serious concerns of many major retailers and the British Retail Consortium have been glossed over.
Usdaw have consulted extensively with our members in retail who already come under severe pressure to work on Sundays, and who say the opt-out of Sunday working does little to prevent this, so the changes to this right will not help them.  A recent survey of over 10,000 retail staff showed:
  • 58% of staff in large stores are already under pressure to work more on Sundays.
  • 35% want to work less hours on Sundays – and only 6% want to work more.
  • A third of staff who have tried to opt out of Sunday working have been unable to.
I attach the full report of the survey, together with a briefing setting out how devolution of Sunday opening hours for large stores will lead to longer opening across the country, not only damaging families and communities, but also small stores, leading to a net loss of employment.

If you would like further information, please contact or call 0161 249 2452.
Yours sincerely
John Hannett
General Secretary, Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive & Allied Workers)