Working conditions protest staged at Lincoln Sports Direct opening

Trade unionists and campaigners marked the opening of a new Sports Direct store in Lincoln this weekend by protesting against the use of zero-hours contracts and low pay.

As previously reported, Sports Direct in Lincoln expanded with a move to a neighbouring St Marks unit on Saturday, November 15.

Some 15 new jobs were created alongside the move.

Lincoln and District TUC gave out leaflets contesting the lack of holiday and sick pay and bonuses for what they described as the 90% of Sports Direct workers on zero-hours contracts.

They also referenced the £240 million in profits that were made by the company in the last financial year in contrast to working conditions.

The protest coincided with a major speech made by Labour Party leader Ed Miliband, who singled out the “Victorian practices” of Sports Direct and described it as a “bad place to work”.

Nick Parker, Secretary of Lincoln & District TUC, said: “When a company like Sports Direct owned by a multi-billionaire like Mike Ashley makes annual profits of £240 million, they can afford to pay their workers at least £10 an hour and give them regular hours at work.

“Lincoln & District TUC held a protest as part of the ongoing Midlands TUC “Decent Jobs” campaign to encourage particularly young workers to organise together to stand up for their rights at work.

“We welcome Ed Miliband’s speech today in drawing more attention to this crucial issue.”