GMB, the union for Spectrum for Arcadia workers, says disgraced peer Philip Green must fork out for redundancy payments as his retail empire collapses.
Arcadia, which owns Topshop, Burtons and Dorothy Perkins, announced last night it had gone into administration, putting 13,000 jobs at risk.
The company has tried to cut GMB - which represents workers in Arcadia’s distribution depots – out of negotiations at a time when workers will need union representation more than ever.
Meanwhile communications from administrators suggests they expect the taxpayer to pay for redundancy and notice pay.
Jake O'Malley, GMB. Senior Organiser, said: “Our members are facing the prospect of losing their jobs just before Christmas. They are worried and angry.
“They tell us the warehouse has never been as busy and they just can't see why the required investment would not be put in.
“Arcadia has not engaged with GMB – a recognised union – throughout this process. Instead they have left members to find out about the collapse through the media. It’s not good enough – in fact, it’s appalling.
“The administrators have made it clear they make no guarantees current employment contracts will be honoured and imply Arcadia will not pay any redundancy and notice pay themselves.
“GMB will fight tooth and nail for every job. But the taxpayer cannot be made to foot the bill for Philip Green’s mistakes once again.
"These long-standing employees have made him his fortune now he refuses to invest back in them in this time. Our members tell us it is ‘utterly shameful’.
“Philip Green put his hands in his deep pockets and make sure his loyal workers aren’t left with nothing but coal this Christmas.”