Tributes to the Queen and the cost-of-living- Taiwo Owatemi's Westminster Diary - The Coventry Observer

Tributes to the Queen and the cost-of-living- Taiwo Owatemi's Westminster Diary

Coventry Editorial 15th Oct, 2022   0

I WOULD first like to take this opportunity to say how honoured I have been to represent Coventry these past few weeks.

Throughout tributes to the late Queen and the proclamation of King Charles III, it has been a privilege to represent my city and share in this period of reflection.

However, the cost-of-living crisis remains the biggest challenge facing us all.

Too many families are really struggling to keep up with the rising cost of petrol, energy bills, rent and the weekly food shop. At the same time, wages are flat lining for many in Coventry.

Take the Amazon warehouse at the Lyons Park industrial estate in my constituency as an example. Despite the cost-of-living crisis, Amazon recently proposed a paltry pay rise worth only 35p per hour for warehouse employees. In real terms, this is a swingeing pay cut.

It goes without saying that Amazon employees will struggle to make ends meet unless they are paid a decent wage that can support them and their family. This winter is already going to be difficult, and a massive real terms pay cut will only make the situation worse.

We all know Amazon is one of the largest and wealthiest companies on the planet. It can quite easily afford to pay every warehouse employee in Coventry – and beyond – a decent wage. I sincerely hope it thinks again and proposes a fair pay rise.

This is why I have been working closely with the GMB trade union and others, together we are calling on Amazon to pay up this winter.

The GMB is also currently balloting its members on whether to take industrial action at the Lyons Park warehouse. If action goes ahead, it would be the first of its kind in Europe.

I will take this important issue straight to Parliament also. I will be pushing for a debate where I can call time on Amazon’s insulting pay proposals.

As the cost-of-living crisis deepens, bad bosses have to be challenged. And I promise to do just that. It’s high time this giant corporation started treating its employees with the respect they deserve.

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