JD Sports to investigate Kingsway DC allegations

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Sportswear retailer JD Sports is to investigate allegations about working conditions at its Kingsway distribution centre by a Channel 4 documentary.

The company said that the footage on Channel 4, which compared the warehouse to prison conditions, is not an accurate reflection of the company culture.

The programme found employees at the site “boasting” about sacking workers for simply sitting down.

In a statement, the company said: “We will be launching an investigation into the implementation of our policies at our Kingsway facility.

“While we maintain that the policies and procedures in place are robust and fair, it is clear that we need to do better in their implementation. In the short term, we intend to retrain all supervisory and security employees at the facility, as a matter of urgency, to ensure that those policies are correctly reflected across the workplace.

“We would like to reiterate that we categorically do not operate a ‘strike’ policy or system and our workers cannot be fired ‘on the spot’; we have a fully outlined disciplinary procedure and appeal process based on the ACAS code of practice. Our time and attendance system is specifically designed to ensure that all workers are paid for the time it takes to exit any queue on leaving the site, and we pay all employees in full who are up to 15 minutes late on arrival.

“Our employees are vital to our business, so we take any such allegations very seriously. As a result, we will undertake to conduct a review of all our policies, their communication and implementation at the site, with the clear aim not only to continue the improvement of the facility, but also to think about the future structure of employment at the site for the benefit of all the people employed at Kingsway. We undertake to be transparent regarding the changes we make, both to our employees and other stakeholders.

“As previously stated, we will readily open our doors to an appropriate independent body wishing to scrutinise our operations at Kingsway.”

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