“Laughable” £100 bonus for staff at JD Sports Warehouse

Date published: 15 April 2020

Staff at the JD Sports Distribution Centre at Kingsway have branded a £100 bonus for working during the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic “laughable.”

JD employees who attended 100% of their planned shifts between 22 March and 4 April will be awarded a £100 bonus as a thank you “for commitment to the DC operations and supporting the JD group during this difficult time”.

However, the recognition award has been called laughable by some of the sports retailer’s employees, as the warehouse has remained open despite repeated calls for it to close.

JD Sports came under fire last month for putting its employees and their families at risk by keeping its warehouse open, despite closing its high-street stores in line with government guidance.

The sports company closed its high-streets shops on 23 March “to protect our employees”.

Since then, the company has been offering a number of offers on website purchases, further infuriating its warehouse workers, who say the workload has far surpassed that of the busiest periods of the year – Black Friday, Christmas and New Year.

Over the past weeks, a number of staff working at the JD warehouse have contacted local councillors, the MP and its union with their concerns that the warehouse is a breeding ground for coronavirus, due to poor hygiene and crowded working conditions.

One employee told Rochdale Online: “They didn’t tell staff about this beforehand as an incentive to stay in work and not take time off, so those who have taken a few hours’ holiday won’t be eligible to receive it. We were told at the start of April.

“So many people have said the amount is laughable, given that we don’t have any choice but to be in work.”

A second employee wrote online: “It seems our lives are worth £100 – provided we didn’t take time off to protect ourselves or our families.”

The retailer has said that it will review the bonuses in coming weeks.

JD Sports has been contacted for comment.

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