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Concern over workers being “bullied” by retailers over Sunday working

20 April 2012

The Government has this week published its ‘Sunday Trading (London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games) Bill 2012’. If the Bill is passed, it could allow retailers in England and Wales to trade for more than six hours on a Sunday in the eight weekends during the Olympics and Paralympics.
In response to the Bill, it is reported that the GMB Union have raised a number of concerns; including that workers will be “bullied into working”.
Current employment legislation in England and Wales gives specific rights to shop and betting workers to refuse to work on Sundays. For example; employees are protected from being dismissed when the reason or principal reason for the dismissal is a reason connected with the refusal of Sunday work.
It will remain to be seen whether the recent resistance from those groups opposed to the relaxation of Sunday Trading Laws will result in any change in approach by the Government on this issue.

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