SBC News Unite to strike against Grosvenor London venues

Unite to strike against Grosvenor London venues

The trade union of Unite will strike against London Grosvenor Casino venues operated by Rank Group Plc this weekend. 

Rank has been warned that Grosvenor employees who are members of the trade union voted unanimously in favour of taking strike action against seven venues in London.

Unite stated that it carried the interests of 150 Grosvenor London staff members that are employed as croupiers, dealers and kitchen staff, who have demanded that Grosvenor London properties pay a fair wage.

Previous negotiations saw Unite employees reject bonus payments of £600 and £800 as “totally inadequate amid a grave and growing cost of living crisis”, warning Rank that “not improving pay is not an option”. 

The strikes will commence on Friday 9 September at 18:00, and run until 06:00 on Monday 12 September, and will likely impact the Grosvenor venues of Victoria, The Rialto, The Gloucester, The Park Tower, The Golden Horseshoe, The St Giles and The Barracuda.

“Grosvenor Casinos need to understand that this workforce is united, and more workers are joining Unite every day,” said Dave Turnbull, Unite’s National Officer for the hospitality sector.

“London is one of the most expensive cities on earth for workers to survive in, which is why the message from the members could not be clearer: Only a substantial uplift in pay will do.

“Grosvenor Casino’s chronic recruitment and retention issues prove that the current pay rates are just not sustainable. Not improving pay is just not an option.”

Rank has previously reported that it has witnessed a significant pre-pandemic footfall in the number of customers engaging with its Grosvenor London properties.

Interim H1 trading saw the LSE gambling group declare statutory operating profits of £82m – primarily related to HMRC VAT repayment of £77m on former gambling machine duties.

The trading update saw Rank management outline concerns on the significant rise of energy prices on its business, which on a current market basis will see the group pay £46m in energy costs in FY2023.

Rank stands by a “strong offer” to London staff, made “against the backdrop of an extremely challenging trading environment,” after the Unite trade union had previously detailed an impending walkout of around 150 workers.

The LSE group released the following statement: “We are disappointed that the Unite union has brought about strike action over the coming weekend amongst a small number of colleagues in four of our eight London casinos.

“Against the backdrop of an extremely challenging trading environment for Rank, and for the sector as a whole, we have made a strong offer which we believe fairly addresses the current cost of living crisis. We expect all of our casinos to be open for business as usual this weekend.”

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