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Tesco Employees on Strike, 17,000 Workers May not Receive Salary

Fanni Kaszás 2019.02.06.

Nearly 17,500 Tesco employees will not receive their January salary as, on Tuesday, the payroll specialists of the Győr office facing closure announced a strike which could paralyze the internal operation of the supermarket chain, Magyar Nemzet reports.

Tesco Global Áruházak Zrt. and the employees of the Győr office were unable to arrive at a compromise concerning the downsizing of the payroll and accounting department. Those affected started Tuesday’s workday with a two-hour warning strike beginning at eight o’clock and suspended their duties until an agreement can be reached with the supermarket chain.

Due to the strike, Tesco employees may not receive their January salaries and social security benefits—among other things—as the work done by the payroll specialists in Győr is essential to the process. Additionally, Tesco will not be able to report new employees or tax returns to the tax office in a timely fashion. The head of the strike committee told Magyar Nemzet that the company will be unable to provide leaving documents for former employees, despite the law only permitting a five-day window to accomplish this.

President of the Independent Union of Trade Workers (KDFSZ) and organizer of the national Tesco strike of 2017 Csaba Bubenkó, stressed that their actions were not meant to harm the more than 17,000 Tesco employees. They apologized to their colleagues, adding that they could not find another way to resolve the unfortunate matter.

Bubenko also shared that they have been negotiating with the company’s representatives. Tesco made an offer in response to the payroll specialists’ original demands, but it didn’t meet the workers’ expectations. The employees scheduled to lose their jobs between 14 June and 19 July would like to arrange their departure and dictate how it will be carried out. The strikers have asked the company to exempt them from work during the entire notice period—which they’ve requested be implemented in two stages—while also taking the principle of equal treatment into account. According to Magyar Nemzet, the Tesco employees stand in solidarity with the payroll specialists facing unemployment.