Jobs at Sainsbury’s Strand Road under threat claims union

More than 200 Sainsbury's jobs in the North could go according to UNITE the Union.

More than 200 Sainsbury's jobs in the North could go according to UNITE the Union.

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Jobs at Sainsbury’s Superstore on the Strand Road are under threat according to UNITE the Union.

In a statement released to media organisations on Tuesday afternoon, UNITE said it estimated that more than 200 jobs would be at risk because of Sainsbury’s decision to restructure its work force.

Sainsbury’s has said it will seek to redeploy any staff affected by the restructuring.

“We currently employ 870 store trainers. We’re now creating around 280 new Learning and Development Manager positions and all affected colleagues will have the opportunity to apply for these more senior roles.

“We will also look to redeploy affected colleagues where possible,” said a spokesperson for Sainsbury’s.

UNITE said it will work with management in an attempt to minimise necessary redundancies

We will also look to redeploy affected colleagues where possible

Sainsbury’s spokesperson

Restructuring will affect UNITE members working in Holywood, West Belfast, Strand Road and Dungannon.

Sean Smyth, UNITE officer for UNITE members in Sainsbury’s explained that UK-wide management plans to restructure night shifts and reduce store trainers would mean that more than two hundred jobs would go in stores across the North.

“We are deeply disappointed by proposals published by Sainsbury’s which threaten to reduce its employment cohort by 2,500 across the UK including a net reduction of 600 store trainers and 1,900 night shift positions. We estimate the potential impact in Northern Ireland to be more than two hundred positions affecting approximately 120 members of UNITE.”

Mr. Smyth added: “While these proposals will impact on all Sainsbury’s stores, we are most concerned about the potential impact on the workforce in stores in Holywood, West Belfast, Strand Road and Dungannon.

“These proposals come as part of a cost-cutting exercise, in which management propose to rationalise employment in the night shift and store trainers across all stores.

“This is not the first time that this proposal has been raised by management and follows on from a pilot initiative. While we understand and support the need to deliver efficiencies and to improve the quality of service to customers we are concerned about the impact of these proposals on our members. We will continue to work collaboratively with management to minimise the numbers who are made redundant as a result of these changes”, Mr. Smyth concluded.