This is the last article you can read this month
You can read more article this month
You can read more articles this month
Sorry your limit is up for this month
RETAIL workers need greater protection from the growing threat of automation in the workplace, Usdaw general secretary Paddy Lillis warned today.
The retail union’s general secretary said artificial intelligence is exacerbating a lack of job security and mental health issues for workers.
Addressing delegates on the opening day of Usdaw’s 2022 conference in Blackpool, Mr Lillis also slammed Tory ministers for scrapping England’s Union Learning Fund last year.
This was despite nine in 10 workers across Britain needing retraining over the next decade due to automation, he added.
Measures are needed which will “benefit the workforce, employers and society more generally,” Mr Lillis said, including a right for workers to be consulted on the introduction of new technology, paid time off for retraining and significant improvements to redundancy rights.
“If we deliver highly organised workplaces and make employers listen to our concerns, then Usdaw members can benefit from technology and automation,” he argued.
“However, if we are not prepared, if we are not organised and if we fail to represent the interests of our members, then new technology has the potential to make members’ working lives harder.”
Delegates unanimously backed a motion which instructed the union to demand retailers ensure there are four workers for every self-checkout machine amid fears over job cuts.
Member Lynn Goodwin, a Sainsbury’s worker, said that increasing use of the technology had led to daily “horror stories” in stores, with overworked staff being blamed by managers for increased incidents of shoplifting by customers using self-checkout.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £10 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.