A total of 88 workers employed by BetFred in Wigan, Greater Manchester, one of the biggest high street bookmakers, will receive a share of £469,000 after Unite, the country’s largest union, challenged the company when it denied its members their rightful redundancy pay.
This will mean an individual average pay out of about £5,300.
The low-paid workers, predominately women, supported by Unite launched a successful social media campaign to ‘name and shame’ BetFred, after the company refused to pay out enhanced redundancy payments to workers (formerly employed by the Tote bookmakers) who lost their jobs after the closure of the Wigan call centre last year.
Unite regional officer Donna Kassim said: “Despite our members having contracts of employment which outlined their terms and conditions and entitlement to redundancy pay the company refused to pay up.
“Together with the workforce we mounted a social media campaign to shame BetFred bosses into doing the right thing. The Justice for BetFred Workers Facebook page attracted hundreds of supporters expressing their solidarity and support.
“We also had the backing of our local Labour councillors and MPs who made written representations to the company over the behaviour of CEO John Haddock and the owner of BetFred, Fred Done.
Unite north west regional secretary Mick Whitley said: “Due to the hard work of our members and their lawyers, workers will now get the redundancy pay out that they are entitled to.
“This demonstrates the value of union membership and how joint action can empower the workforce to challenge employers who don’t respect the terms and conditions of employment.
“Unite has secured £469,978.65 in redundancy and notice payments for its members.”
Notes to editors:
For more information please contact Unite regional officer Donna Kassim on 07740 174393 or Unite communications officer Karen Viquerat on 07768 931 316 or 0151 559 2003.
As of February 2016, the company has 1,370 betting shops.
Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.
Unite legal services acts for over 20,000 members a year and recovered over £160 million in damages last year. Unite legal services provides support to members in respect of all types of employment tribunal claims.
Unite legal services have taken the most high profile of employment cases over the last 12 months, and secure legal victories in significant claims for the benefit of members.
Unite legal services recently won the holiday pay case allowing workers to receive their normal pay in their times of rest, this win alone was worth tens of millions in compensation for Unite members.
Unite legal services guarantee that members always receive 100 per cent of their damages.