Unite, Britain and Ireland’s largest union, has called for a
London-wide boycott by the public of leisure centres run by social
enterprise leisure services’ giant Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL).
Unite said the boycott call of GLL’s money-spinning leisure centres
across the capital would support the 50 Bromley library staff who have
been on strike since 6 June over pay and other issues specifically
relating to GLL’s stewardship of Bromley’s 14 libraries.
The boycott will be launched on Friday (28 June) when Unite members
will stage protests at three GLL venues in Woolwich. GLL has contracts
with 16 London boroughs to run leisure centres and/or libraries.
The union is aiming its boycott campaign at potential new members
that the GLL sales force wants to sign up for gym membership and fitness
classes, as well as one-off users. It is not aimed at those with
pre-paid membership plans.
Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: “The call for the London-wide
boycott of GLL leisure centres is aimed at putting pressure where it
hurts – in the company’s coffers – to achieve a resolution of the
Bromley library dispute.
“We argue that every penny that goes to
GLL, generated by its money-spinning activities at its leisure centres,
helps it to win further library contracts which then results in a
serious erosion of library services for both users and staff.
“Our Bromley library members have been on continuous strike since 6
June and have received fantastic support from the public who are
refusing to enter the libraries in a great show of support.”
Bromley dispute relates to GLL bosses not filling vacant posts; asking
staff to be managers without paying the proper rate for the job; and
failing to pay wages owed.
Unite is seeking a six per cent
increase in basic pay from April 2019 for its hundreds of members
working for GLL in more than 140 leisure centres and libraries in 16
London boroughs, as well as in Belfast.
The London boroughs
with GLL contracts are: Barnet, Bromley, Camden, Croydon, Ealing,
Greenwich, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Hillingdon, Lambeth,
Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Merton, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest
Notes to editors:
Diary of upcoming protest events organised by Unite
Friday 28 June
10.00 – Headquarters building. Middlegate House, The Royal Arsenal, Woolwich SE18 6SX
11.00 – Waterfront leisure centre, Woolwich High Street, London SE18 6DL
12.00 – Woolwich library, Calderwood Street, London SE18 6QZ
Friday 5 July
Demonstration at 10.00 – Charlton Lido, Hornfair Park, Shooters Hill Road, SE18 4LX. The lido is a GLL showpiece venue.
Last year, Unite staged a campaign to make GLL pay the London Living
Wage (LLW) to those aged 18-to-20 on a number of its contracts in the
For more information please contact Unite senior communications
officer Shaun Noble on 020 3371 2060 or 07768 693940. Unite press office
is on: 020 3371 2065 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org