SUPERMARKET and grocery shop workers in the Madrid area are set to strike over Christmas over wage rise demands.

The UGT trade union has announced four strike days in the Community of Madrid on December 23, 24, 30 and 31

A union statement said the strike call was a response after ‘months of failed attempts’ by the UGT to get a collective wage deal for supermarket workers in the region.

UGT Madrid spokesperson, Jose Casero, said a new agreement started to be negotiated in September 2022 with the aim of ‘raising the salaries of shelf-stackers, shop assistants and cleaning staff who are paid less than the minimum wage’.

According to UGT, the strikes will affect various supermarket chains such as Alcampo, Hiper Usera, Hiber, La Sirena, Carrefour and companies that are members of the ACES and ASEDAS employers associations.

Union members working in traditional markets, shopping arcades and grocery stores are also part of the industrial action.

“We don’t have a date for the next meeting with the employers,” said Jose Casero.

“We believe they lack responsibility because this agreement affects workers who were considered essential during the pandemic and have now been forgotten with long working hours who deserve to have improved conditions.”

Casero commented that the workforce has suffered a big loss in purchasing power despite ‘huge profits’ recorded by companies.

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