Workers report punters turning away from bookies in droves as they refuse to cross picket lines
Union calls on Graham family to intervene and end costly dispute by making reasonable pay offer
April 9th: Davy McMurray, Unite officer for staff in SP Graham bookmakers congratulated his members on their third day of strike action in demand of a Living Wage:
“Counter staff from SP Graham outlets across Northern Ireland took strike action today to demand an end to their poverty pay. This was an undeniably successful strike with most outlets only eventually opening only to remain exceptionally quiet on what should have been the busiest day of the year.
“Our members and Unite want to thank all those who refused to cross the picket lines. In showing your solidarity for these striking workers you have struck a blow for fair pay for all and strengthened the hand of workers in struggle everywhere.
“Unite was very pleased that representatives of the Bakers’ Union joined us on the picket-line, as did representatives from a wide variety of progressive political parties. Their presence meant a lot to the workers concerned and will be remembered as we head into elections.
“As management count the cost of this strike action, Unite is calling on the Graham family to intervene directly to put an end to it. They now know the strength of determination of their staff, including many young workers, to obtain a decent rate of pay, so as to lift themselves out of poverty.
“There is much to be gained from paying their workers a Living Wage; a move that would transform the unnecessary negative publicity associated with this dispute and improve the company’s standing in the public mind.
“We are calling on the Grahams to intervene directly and commence negotiations. We wish to end this dispute but can only do so when our members receive a decent pay offer – such a move will ensure that we do not have to take further days of action in pursuit of this goal”, Mr McMurray concluded.