Primark has notified the unions the start of a Temporary Employment Regulation File (ERTE) due to force majeure in Spain, where it has a workforce of over 7,000 employees, after the closure of all its stores after declaring the state of alarm in Spain to fight the spread of the coronavirus.
Specifically, the ‘low-cost’ fashion label has offered its employees to complete the unemployment benefit up to 100% of the monthly salary in March, as well as not to deduct from the extra payments the amount that belongs to the time that the contracts of work are suspended, as reported by CCOO.
The firm has also put on the table not to discount vacation days for the time that employment contracts are suspended and that vacations not enjoyed by the crisis will be agreed again with the management of the stores.
However, CCOO considers these conditions still insufficient and claims that the guarantee regarding salary, as well as the accrual of extra payments and vacations, they extend at least until April 11, “since the government has already announced the extension of the state of alarm and that the health crisis of the Covid-19 is not transferred to the pockets of the staff.”
The union has criticized that the Irish multinational has accepted the ERTE. “We believe that companies like Primark cannot be compared to small and medium-sized businesses, since their business assets can bear the wage cost of this extraordinary period and it is not necessary to charge the State for the costs of 7,000 employees,” they point out.
Primark has in Spain more than 40 establishments scattered throughout the territory and was planning to open a store this year in Barcelona and another in Seville.
The textile chain has announced the closure of all its establishments in the United Kingdom as part of the containment measures of the coronavirus epidemic, with which the company has closed its 376 establishments in 12 countries, which represents for the firm the loss of around £ 650m (€ 708m) in net sales each month, as reported by the Associated British Foods (ABF), the company’s parent.
More on MSN:
Spain already registers 33,089 infected with coronaviruses, of which 2,182 have died (Video: El Pais)