The Primark Desert

My sister walked in the door this evening shouting loudly about her human rights.

‘What happened?’ I asked.

‘I’m dying of dehydration!’ she shrieked. ‘Primark won’t let us have water behind the till!’

ImageIt turns out that no, Primark employees are not allowed to have bottled water with them when they stand behind the tills for hours at a time. They are told they can go to the staff room if they need a drink, but in the large Primark stores, getting to the staff room on the third floor can be a lengthy mission, particularly when you have to fight your way through crowds, avoiding customers who look like they’re about to ask you where something is.

Surely in a business where squeezing as much energy from the workers is ‘considered cost effective’, wouldn’t sending employees off every thirty minutes eat into valuable profits?
As my sister pointed out, she could ask to repeatedly go to the staff room, but run the risk of getting told off for being ‘unproductive’.

But why am I surprised about this, really? As one of many companies that appear to have little or no concern about the safety of their production lines in other countries until after people suffer, why would they care about keeping a bunch of British teenagers well hydrated?

The pyramid of shit strikes again…


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