Tesco staff handed £1.52 food voucher as ‘reward’ for battling through snow

Tesco workers at a distribution centre who defied severe snow storms to turn up for their shifts have been rewarded with a lunch voucher – for £1.52.

Dozens of lorries left the supermarket giant’s Scottish depot during the storms to deliver supplies to stores.

But workers were offered meal tickets and chocolates as a thanks for their efforts.

The offer has been described as “derisory and insulting” by employees.

Livingston distribution centre manager Robert Milne caused anger when posters appeared offering staff a meal voucher as a token of thanks.

Staff were also offered “treats” for “going that extra mile”.

One Tesco worker told the Sunday Mail : “The meal voucher is being seen as absolutely derisory and insulting. It has caused a real backlash within the warehouse.

“In some cases, the voucher didn’t even cover the cost of a meal. Meals range from £1.40 to £3.

“There was a pie dish on ­Monday that cost £1.80 and people were having to add money to buy a meal. That just added insult to injury.

“Drivers are also on the road more often the not and some haven’t even seen the chocolates that were spread around the office for people to eat.”

The disgruntled employee added: “Double time or time-and-a-half for all the ­people who clocked in during the bad weather was suggested but dismissed by management.”

Tesco posted half-year profits of £471million last October.

Labour MSP Neil Findlay said: “This is yet more evidence of a huge and very profitable ­company having a complete lack of awareness of how to deal with their staff who went beyond the call of duty in such difficult ­circumstances.

“Many went out in a red weather warning to ensure they got to work and delivered ­essential food stuffs to communities and here we have their bosses insulting them with a derisory offer that barely buys them a pie and chips.”

Tesco Livingston manager Robert Milne’s poster said: “Thank you for all your hard work ensuring we have been able to deliver lifeline services (food and fuel) across Scotland, Northern Ireland and the North of England last week.

“As a token of our thanks for everyone’s efforts across the week to recover the service, we would like to issue all colleagues with a meal voucher.”

A Tesco spokesman said: “We are very proud of the efforts our Livingston colleagues made to continue to support stores ­following the recent weather disruption and as a little help to say thank you, colleagues were offered a free meal in their ­subsidised canteen.”

Unions last week claimed half of workers were pressurised by bosses to travel during the red weather warning.

Household names including Lloyds Bank, Royal Bank of ­Scotland, Marks & Spencer, KFC and McDonald’s were criticised in a survey by the ­Scottish Trades Union ­Congress.

Some 43 per cent of the more than 900 staff who responded said they were forced to travel during the threat-to-life alert.

STUC deputy general ­secretary Dave Moxham said: “There’s been a justifiable outcry and debate at the failure of many employers to protect their staff and guarantee their pay during the adverse weather period.

“Tesco management might think that this tokenistic gesture of appreciation puts them on the right side of that debate.

“But in reality it simply shows how much they underestimate the effort and dedication which was required to keep working through the adverse weather conditions and to help keep the food supply chain moving.

“The STUC are formulating, along with the Scottish ­Government, a fair work charter for adverse weather conditions and we will be expecting all employers to sign up to it.”

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