UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Monday, 8 March 2010

Sheffield Supports Compass School Meals Workers!‏

Over 100 people attended a public meeting on Saturday morning to hear women from the School Meals Service launch their petition to the Council over their working conditions. 400 women working for the multinational Compass Group provide meals for pupils in 129 schools. Half of them do not receive sick pay, are only paid for 43 weeks of the year and are all on the wrong hourly rate.

The women have already collected over 500 signatures in less than a week and are taking their campaign to parents, governors and other schools workers. They will then present their petition to the Council at Sheffield City Hall on April 9th. The petition calls on the Council to force Compass to comply with the Government's Workforce Code for private contractors.

Workers spoke of their unfair terms but also of lack of cutlery, new uniforms and basic health standards. Some workers have bought cutlery out of their own pockets because of Compass failure to provide enough.

The Labour MP Clive Betts also spoke at the meeting offering his full support and that of the Labour Group. He urged all the women to join a trade union as an essential part of the campaign.

Workers have also met with Angela Smith Labour MP who is supporting the campaign. Nick Clegg MP also met the workers and has written to the Council and the Company.

Last year Compass recorded a £733 million per tax profit.