McDonald's admits over 90% of staff on zero hour contracts
The Independent online reported on 6th August 2013 that McDonald's has admitted that up to 90 per cent of its UK employees are on zero-hour contracts. The admission indicated that it is potentially the largest zero-hour employer in the UK's private sector, with 82,800 contracted staff not guaranteed work or a stable income.
The controversial practice requires employees to be available for work but, as they are contracted for 0 hours a week, employers are under no obligation to use them or pay them a set wage. This allows businesses to not pay staff during quiet periods, but ensures they are available to work at short notice when required.
Politicians have reacted to McDonald’s admission by calling for it to offer affected staff a new contract with a guarantee of minimum hours.
A spokeswoman for McDonald’s said all those applying for a job with the company are given the opportunity to state which days they could work, with all zero-hours employees told of their shift patterns well in advance.
According to the article, McDonald's had admitted to using the practice since it entered the UK in 1974.
McDonald's handed an ASBO
On Thursday 5th September the union GMB and Tom Watson, Labour MP for West Bromwich East, presented an Anti Social Behviour Order (ASBO) to the senior managers at McDonald's UK Head Office in Finchley.
The union presented the ASBO in protest at the company employing nearly 83,000 staff on zero-hour contracts. GMB stated that 'rent payments aren't flexible and neither are gas bills or the weekly shopping bills, so flexible wages are not much use to anyone except McDonald's'.
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