Up to 40 Lloyds Pharmacy stores across Ireland impacted by strike action today

Saturday 18 August 2018

Mandate Trade Union thank public for their support and apologise for inconvenience

Up to 270 Lloyds Pharmacy workers in almost 40 stores across Ireland will strike today (Saturday, 18th August 2018) as they continue their campaign against low pay and zero hour contracts in the company.

Mandate Trade Union has apologised for any inconvenience caused to the public but say the company has left their members with no choice but to strike after management refused to accept a Labour Court recommendation instructing them to negotiate with their workers’ representatives.

John Douglas, Mandate General Secretary thanked the public for their support:

“Today is the 8th strike our members have been forced to engage in simply because management refuse to acknowledge their workers’ right to be represented by a trade union of their choice.

“Our members do not want to be out on strike, they want to be in their pharmacies serving their patients and their customers. It is extremely disappointing that management don’t pick up the phone and make a call to Mandate agreeing to a meeting so that we can avoid this major inconvenience for their customers, their workers and prevent any further damage to the business.”

He added, ”Lloyds Pharmacy is an extremely profitable company, owned by the largest pharmaceutical company on the planet, and yet they employ their workers in Ireland on zero hour contracts with pay rates close to the minimum wage. This is unacceptable.”

Mr Douglas concluded: “The public have been a massive support since our campaign began, buying tea and coffee, sandwiches, ice creams and other refreshments for the strikers and we can’t thank them enough. Almost 20,000 members of the public have also signed a petition in support of the workers which gives us more confidence that we will win this dispute.”

The strike relates to a claim by Mandate Trade Union on behalf of its 270 members employed by LloydsPharmacy which includes:

  • A pay increase with adequate incremental pay scales (Lloyds workers’ pay scales start at €10 per hour);
  • A sufficient sick pay scheme;
  • Security of hours and the elimination of zero hour contracts; and
  • Improvements in annual leave entitlements and public holiday premiums.

Lloyds Pharmacy workers have participated in eight work stoppages over the last two months with the ninth strike set for next Saturday (25th August).



LloydsPharmacy is Ireland’s largest pharmaceutical chain operating 88 stores across the country with approximately 800 workers employed in their pharmacies.

LloydsPharmacy is owned by the McKesson Corporation which is the largest pharmaceutical company in the world with revenues of €183.88 billion in 2017 – more than double the revenue of the Irish state.

McKesson also own UDG Healthcare (formerly United Drug) which is headquartered in Ireland, and where the workers are afforded their right to trade union representation (SIPTU and Unite represent staff in Ireland).

Lloyds Pharmacy argues it does not operate zero hour contracts despite Mandate publishing a number of the contracts. A number of employment experts have also stated that the contracts do not guarantee any hours of employment for workers.

The Company also argues that it already negotiates with an internal staff representative body, the ‘CRC’, however this body was established by management, is funded by the company to the tune of €10,000 and has never allowed elections to take place. It also allowed senior management a vote on low paid workers terms and conditions of employment.

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