UNITED PHARMACY in Liverpool is the latest UK pharmacy chain to be hit by a nationwide strike, with thousands of employees going on strike.
The company has been hit by weeks of protests after the British Government’s decision to allow private pharmacies to sell to anyone over the age of 18.
The action comes just days after United Pharmacy workers at the company’s Liverpool branch went on strike, demanding better pay and working conditions.
Union bosses say their actions are not only about pay, but also about their jobs.
“It’s about protecting our livelihoods,” said a United Pharmacies worker at the branch in Liverpool.
“There are some other people who are here and there are others who are not.”
In a statement, the company said:”The safety of our customers and staff is paramount and we are working closely with our union to resolve this matter.”
The company also said that while it is “committed to delivering outstanding service”, the strikes were not a result of the Government’s plans to allow pharmaceuticals to be sold across the UK.
“We have consistently defended our position and have no intention of changing our position,” it added.
“As always, we will continue to deliver on our core principles of fair pay and safe working conditions.”
In the US, the pharmacy giant Walgreens has also been hit with a major strike.
Its workers in the San Francisco Bay Area have voted to strike over the company refusing to provide health insurance for its workers, who have taken to the streets to demand better pay.
“This is an opportunity to build on the strength of the company,” the company told workers in a statement.
But some in the US have criticised Walgarts actions, accusing the company of not providing enough benefits.”
The union has a strong record of working collaboratively with our partners and has demonstrated the ability to work effectively in partnership.”
But some in the US have criticised Walgarts actions, accusing the company of not providing enough benefits.
The UK union, Unite, has called for the action at United Pharmacists, and said the actions would force the retailer to take “a serious look at its workforce” and “come to a more rational conclusion”.
“The actions of the Walgores in the United States and across the United Kingdom are being driven by the greed of the super-rich, and will not only cause harm to the Walgreen family, but our national economy as well,” a Unite spokesman said.
“Walgreens needs to stand up for its employees and our economy, not its shareholders.”