‘OUR strike is very effective. The cinema is completely closed down!’ BECTU rep and Ritzy cinema worker, Kelly Rogers, told News Line yesterday.
Workers at the Ritzy cinema in Brixton, south London, held their second one-day strike yesterday, as news broke that cinema workers at the Picture House in Hackney, east London have voted by 100% to join them. The strike is spreading!
The strikers are demanding the London Living Wage of £9.40 per hour and will stop at nothing until they get it. They vow to continue an escalating programme of strikes until they win.
Rogers continued: ‘This was a second strike and our first was on September 24th.
‘We are taking our campaign to the British Film Institute (BFI) on the South Bank, to Leicester Square Odeon and the Picture House Central in Piccadilly Circus.
‘Our main campaign is for the Living Wage to be paid as a minimum, but we also do not think that the BFI should make a partnership with companies who treat their workers so poorly.
‘The management is still refusing to speak to us. We received very good news yesterday that the Hackney Picture House staff voted by 100% to join us and will be on strike with us on October 15th.’
Another striker Holly Fishman Crook said: ‘It is important for us that other Picture Houses are involved in the strike. It is only because we have a strong union membership that our campaign is achieving support and success. When I see the junior doctors’ struggle and the Deliveroo workers, I find it very inspiring.’
Tom Brandon, who is from the ‘Defend the Ten’ campaign set up to defend all ten libraries in Lambeth, five of which are threatened with closure, came to support the struggle.
He said: ‘I am here in solidarity because Ritzy workers supported the Lambeth libraries campaign. If we all come together we can win.’ As well as the demand for the Living Wage, the Ritzy workers also demand:
• Company sick pay for all.
• Company maternity/ paternity/adoption pay.
• Pay rises for supervisors, managers, chefs, sound technicians and projectionists.