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Why you should support #PicturehouseStrike

In 2007 Ritzy Cinema workers began their campaign for a Living Wage.

Seven years later, in 2014, they returned with 13 high-profile strikes through their union BECTU, resulting in a 26% pay rise and an agreement with Picturehouse Cinemas (owned by Cineworld) to re-negotiate towards the London Living Wage in June 2016. The company have now back-tracked on this agreement and have refused to negotiate in any way, disappointing employees, customers and the local communities. Meanwhile, the vast majority of Hackney Picturehouse staff are BECTU members, but Picturehouse has repeatedly refused to acknowledge their chosen union. Instead, they recognise the Staff Forum, a union set up and funded by Picturehouse themselves. Hackney staff have been denied a platform of any kind upon which to discuss the London Living Wage or the improvement of working conditions. Left with no other choice, staff held a ballot and found 100% of votes in favour of strike action.

So, now the campaign is back and stronger than ever, this time uniting the forces of both Ritzy and Hackney Picturehouse workers in the drive for:

  • A London Living Wage
  • BECTU union recognition (Hackney only)
  • Company sick pay for all staff
  • Company maternity/paternity/adoption pay
  • Fair pay rises for supervisors, managers, chefs, sound technicians and projectionists

“Picturehouse workers are heroic. Picturehouse is owned by Cineworld which is a big multinational corporation. They make fortunes. The idea that they pay starvation wages because they can get people who are desperate for work is absolutely shocking. Victory to Picturehouse workers, no doubt." - Ken Loach.

Cineworld made £83.8 million profit in 2015 yet they claim that they cannot afford to meet the reasonable requests of the staff.

Picturehouse pitch themselves as an ethical business. They host independent films and sell Fairtrade goods. Now they must complete the package and treat their staff fairly. A Living Wage is a human right. We can't live on free popcorn and Coca Cola.

Please support the campaign, follow us on social media and give whatever you can afford to this strike fund.

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12 Oct 2016

Updates from #PicturehouseStrike

As this fundraising campaign proceeds, you’ll see updates appearing here.