Around 10,000 workers are facing an uncertain future following revelations today of Woolworths’ decision to sell or shut down its Masters home improvement stores across the country.
The SDA, the union for retail workers, National Secretary, Gerard Dwyer said the union’s immediate focus is on supporting the at-risk workers.
“There are thousands of Masters workers waking up to news of an uncertain future. The SDA will be working with the major retailer to minimise the impact on individuals and doing everything we can to support workers during this period.
“The company has assured us that its preferred outcome is to sell the business as a going concern and if this is achieved the SDA will promptly engage the new owners on behalf of our members.
“If a sale cannot be secured, we’ll be ensuring that every possible avenue for redeployment of Masters’ dedicated, hard-working employees is explored.
“Woolworths is a very large company with a good track record on redeploying staff where brands have been closed or down-sized. The union has already sought and been given assurances that Woolworths would be working closely with staff and the SDA to maximise redeployments should the business have to close,” Mr Dwyer said.
“We can assure staff that all employee entitlements will be protected whether the business is sold or closed.
“This is obviously a devastating time for workers and their families, and the SDA will be doing everything we can to support them during this uncertain period.
Mr Dwyer said he has spoken to company representatives this morning and discussions will be ongoing as we move through this difficult period.
The SDA will have as many representatives on hand to support Masters employees and their families. Any Masters employee who is seeking urgent support should contact the SDA office in their respective state.
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