Tuesday, 9 February 2016

The Government consultation response on Sunday trading is a whitewash says Usdaw

I fully support USDAWs campaign to 'Keep Sunday Special'.

Whilst it is great for consumers to shop on Sunday it is worth remembering that staff will have to give up two days at weekends.

The current Sunday trading compromise we have currently works well. As a society we are in danger of not only asking a lot more of lowly paid retail workers, but handing over another day of the week to a consumerist society. We should designate Sunday a family day or community day, not to kneel at the alter of corporate profits and the big business lobby.


Shopworkers trade union leader John Hannett is calling on the Government to publish in full all the consultation responses they have received about a proposal to devolve Sunday trading regulations to local authorities.

BIS has today published its response to the consultation, five months after it closed, which acknowledges they received over 7,000 responses but only focuses on a handful of those who support the Government’s view.

John Hannett – Usdaw General Secretary says: “Whilst we accept that there are mixed views about longer Sunday opening in retail sector, we know there is huge opposition to the proposal to devolve the matter to local authorities. The overwhelming majority of retailers do not want to have to deal with nearly 300 different regulatory regimes across the country, it is a nightmare scenario.

“The Government has not only failed to listen to the retail industry, but has gone out of their way to ignore the views, research and evidence of everyone who recognises that devolution of Sunday trading will strangle the sector in red tape. We know the Government has been told this in no uncertain terms, so let’s see the true strength of support or opposition to devolution by publishing all responses to the consultation.

“The Sunday Trading Act is a great British compromise, which has worked well for over 20 years and gives everyone a little bit of what they want. Retailers can trade, customers can shop, staff can work; whilst Sunday remains a special day, different to other days, and shopworkers can spend some time with their family.”

Notes for editors:

Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fourth biggest and the fastest growing trade union with over 440,000 members. Membership has increased by more than 17% in the last five years and by nearly a third in the last decade. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the Union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemicals and other trades.

Usdaw survey of retail staff: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/CMSPages/GetFile.aspx?guid=e401039e-75f9-4675-8216-56fa579b65b0

The BIS Consultation closed on 16 September and applies to England and Wales: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/devolving-sunday-trading-rules

For further information please contact David Williams, Usdaw’s Media Officer, on 0161 249 1469, 07798 696 603 or david.a.williams@usdaw.org.uk

For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

Shareable press release link: http://usd.aw/1QSIl77

Media; Communications Dept
Usdaw, 188 Wilmslow Road, Manchester M14 6LJ
Tel: 0161 224 2804 | Fax: 0161 248 8588
mailto: communications@usdaw.org.uk
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