Union activists target venues run by Stefan King’s G1 Group in Glasgow’s popular Ashton Lane.

Entertainment tycoon Stefan King doesn't pay the minimum wage

Entertainment tycoon Stefan King doesn’t pay the minimum wage

Union activists from the Better Than Zero campaign and the Bakers’ Union (BFAWU) staged a dramatic flash mob outside a popular night time venue in Glasgow’s Ashton Lane yesterday evening.

The activists targeted the notorious G1 entertainment group, which has several venues in Ashton Lane, including the Grosvenor Cinema and cafe, and The Lane bar.

Activists entered the venues and settled down with a drink while a band set up in the lane outside. As the band started playing union songs, banners where unfurled and between 40 and 50 people walked out of the venues and joined the singing.

The event was lighthearted and non-confrontational, but G1 Group called the police, who arrived on horseback. By this time the flash mob had dispersed, after handing leaflets to passersby.

Better Than Zero is a campaign by the Scottish Trade Union Congress to tackle low wages, zero hour contracts and poor conditions in the retail and entertainment industry. The STUC has set up a helpline that young workers can call for advice.

The Bakers’ Union last year launched a campaign called Hungry for Justice, focusing on organising the fast food industry. BFAWU activists took part in the Fast Food Global day of action against fast food companies earlier this year.

G1 Group, owned by Stefan King, are a trendy entertainment chain, with popular pubs, restaurants and other venues. The group is notorious for stunts such as putting two way mirrors in women’s bathrooms and charging punters to spy on them.

Better Than Zero in solidarity with Ritzy Living Wage

Better Than Zero in solidarity with Ritzy Living Wage

However King’s group has also failed to pay the national minimum wage to more than 3,000 staff.

Staff at G1 venues tell, on condition of anonymity, of a climate of intimidation and fear that makes it very hard to speak out against injustices.

Activists also hung a banner from the Grosvenor Cinema, in solidarity with workers from the Ritzy Cinema in Brixton, London, who are fighting for a living wage through their union BECTU.

Watch the video

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.
Author avatar

Walton Pantland

South African trade unionist living in Glasgow. Loves whisky, wine, running and the great outdoors. Walton did an MA in Industrial Relations at Ruskin, Oxford, and is interested in how trade unions use new technology to organise.

Read All Articles

Related Articles

Dunnes Stores concede Mandate Trade Union’s 3% pay claim
Tue May 2015 /

Dunnes Stores concede Mandate Trade Union’s 3% pay claim

Mandate Trade Union has today (Tuesday, 12th May 2015) cautiously welcomed concession of their 3 percent pay claim for Dunnes Stores workers. However, the union says the pay increase must be implemented with secure, banded hour contracts for it to be meaningful. Mandate lodged a claim for a 3 percent pay increase on April 16th. […]

Read More
FIFA’s choice is simple: human rights matter!
Fri Feb 2016 /

FIFA’s choice is simple: human rights matter!

A STATEMENT FROM BWI – The Building and Wood Workers’ International Football is a game, but building stadiums is not child’s play. It is dangerous and tough labor. The workers who build the stadiums cannot be sacrificed for entertainment. This Friday, FIFA members will elect a new president. It is time for FIFA members to […]

Read More