By Gerard McPeake
Domino’s Pizza has over 8000 corporate and franchised stores in more than 54 countries and an annual revenue of around £700m. This profit is secured through paying their employees as little as possible and in some cases even charging their employees to simply work.
In Wolverhampton a Hungarian employee, Tibor Sorosi, had managed to actually earn negative wages due to illegal pay deductions. Mr Sorosi’s girlfriend, Szilvania Dali, who also worked at the franchise wasn’t paid for her first week’s work as she was told it was “unpaid training”. They had no employment contracts and lived in company supplied accommodation without a tenancy agreement like many of Domino’s migrant workers. There have even been attempts recently to evict them from their home. These claims came to light after T&G/Unite officials in August claimed that eight Hungarian migrant workers were fired in Derby after they challenged the company over pay deductions which left them owing Domino’s money.
When Unite brought this to the attention of Domino’s, they promised an immediate investigation with the results shared with the union. However this investigation would cost Domino’s money and also expose the true extent of this exploitation and therefore it has never been carried out. Instead after sustained pressure the workers housing insecurity has been addressed and a settlement has been reached dealing with their employment claims. In this deal however was an agreement preventing the workers from telling third parties, including the media, about the settlement.
The workers at Domino’s start their jobs owing the company for the uniforms which are compulsory to wear. This is apparently a deposit to ensure that the uniforms are returned at the end of employment. This deposit is never seen again by the employees in most cases. Pay is the minimum wage in the majority of cases with false promises of opportunities of promotion.
Domino’s has shown itself to be concerned only with profits and of course what better way to make a profit than to actually charge their employees for the work which they are doing! Domino’s, like many bosses, has targeted migrant workers who are in most cases isolated from the wider community and unaware of their rights.
This scandal is a clear indicator of the need for fighting democratic unions. There is also a need for workers to stand alongside migrant workers and together fight poor conditions in the workplace. If you are low paid or if you happen to work for Domino’s and you would like more information or help in fighting for decent pay and conditions then contact the Fight Back! Campaign at 07876146473 or 90232962 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.