Struggling UK supermarket firm Wm Morrison is under threat of a distribution strike that unions say could result in empty shelves at its supermarkets across the country.
The GMB union, which represents workers in Morrisons’ distribution network, has revealed documents that suggest the retailer has already decided to close three distribution depots (at Aylesford in Kent, Warrington in Cheshire, and Bristol) despite telling workers that the sites were still under review, reported The Independent.
The union has warned that a strike over the depot closures and resultant job losses would leave shelves empty within days.
“The company has been deliberately misleading the GMB and their employees for many months. The company will have to pay a very high price for taking its workforce for granted and losing their trust. These secret plans will ensure a “yes” vote for industrial action and it cannot be long before the shelves in Morrisons’ supermarkets are empty,” Jude Brimble of the GMB was quoted by the newspaper as saying.
Morrisons said that although it was likely to close depots as it streamlines its operations after the merger with Safeway, it had not made a decision on any particular site.
“The GMB has previously claimed that there are secret plans to close depots and it is disappointing that they are seeking to cause further anxiety among our depot employees with yet more speculation. They are well aware that a review is under way. No conclusions have been reached,” the company was quoted as saying.