Recent reports in the local press, on social media and at a meeting organised by Derry Trades Council have exposed the draconian conditions facing workers in the Firstsource call centre in the city. For example, almost 140 workers have found out they were summarily suspended only upon checking their work rota.
Speaking on behalf of Foyle Socialist Party, Ellie Hippsley said:
“The Socialist Party gives its full support to these workers organising against bully-boy management tactics. Due to this, it is clear they must rely on their own collective strength by organising in a trade union. By standing together and using their industrial strength, the workers have the power to put management on the back foot. Public support for these workers has been phenomenal, as has been demonstrated by the response on social media. After the latest round of summary suspensions, the trade union movement in Derry should organise a protest in support of the workers to allow the people of the city to send a message to Firstsource management and demand the reversal of these suspensions.”
“These disgraceful conditions are, unfortunately, not the exception but the norm in the call centre industry. Firstsource is a hugely profitable firm but has received millions in handouts from Invest NI, just like many low-paying, anti-union employers. Meanwhile, the Assembly Executive plans to slash 20,000 pensionable jobs in the public sector and is prepared to slash many more to pay for a cut to corporation tax to attract more of these sweatshop-type employers. These policies will only accelerate the race to the bottom. We need a united fightback across the public and private sectors in 2015 to defend jobs, conditions, pay and pensions.”