Tuesday, 28 August 2012


         Fast food, fast buck, that seems to be the mantra of the fast food outlets They all pay low wages and some even below the minimum rate. With Domino Pizza trying to screw the drivers and Burger King, union busting and intimidating migrant workers, the pattern is repeated across the globe.

By Joe Carolan
       Workers employed by the Burger King fast-food chain, organised by the Unite Union in Aotearoa/New Zealand, are suffering a sustained union-busting campaign, and are now fighting back.
Burger King workers are the lowest-paid fast food workers in Aotearoa/New Zealand. Most are on the minimum wage, even some who have worked there for 15 years. Managers on salary are forced to work extra hours, and sometimes work for less than the minimum wage per hour. Many workers in Burger King are migrant workers, mostly from the Indian subcontinent. They face a bonded labour system. They are terrified of speaking out about mistreatment in case the company revokes their visa sponsorship .
           Now the company has tried to bust their union, and is seeking an injunction stopping them from speaking to the media and conducting teach-ins in the community. Unite has taken the company to the Employment Authority, detailing the company's illegal anti-union activities, in a battle that is now shaping up to be the McLibel case of the South Pacific.
          Unite union appeals to workers in other countries to organise pickets outside Burger King outlets in all the great cities of the world in solidarity with our fight.
Our fight is for the low-paid precarious workers.
Our fight is for the invisible migrant workers.
Our fight is against 21st century bonded labour and slavery.
Workers of the world unite! Down with the Burger King!
[Joe Carolan is campaigns officer for the Unite union, Aotearoa/New Zealand. Phone 029 44 55 702 or email joseph@unite.org.nz. Heaps of videos, photographs and information at Unite's blog at http://unitenews.wordpress.com.]

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