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Farmers retail workers to wear stickers on uniform in pay protest

Farmers retail workers are taking uniform strike action against what they say are unfair wages, which'll see staff wearing stickers on their work uniform as a form of protest.

According to First Union staff have long been subject to an unfair performance pay system and have decided it’s time to grade their employer with an 'F'.

The grade reflects Farmers’ refusal to pay the Living Wage and the company’s faulty performance pay system that keeps wages down, a statement from First Union says.

Workers are taking take action throughout the country over the next two weeks to demonstrate to customers why they think their employer deserves an "F".

The various actions kick off today with a partial action of a uniform strike in some stores. Staff will wear an "F for Farmers: Farmers Workers Deserve a Living Wage" sticker on their shirt in reference to the company’s unfair performance pay system and unliveable wages.

Stores taking part in this partial strike action include Henderson, St Lukes, NorthWest and LynnMall in Auckland, Paraparaumu and Dunedin. There are many more actions to come over the next two weeks.

First Union's Tali Williams says Farmers’ pay rates should be "a source of embarrassment to a company that prides itself on family values".

She says 80 per cent of Farmers workers are paid less than the Living Wage.

"Minimum wages are not enough to live on. Farmers is well behind other major retailers with its pay rates. What’s worse is that Farmers is one of the only major retailers with a performance pay system that actively keeps wages down.

"The strike action staff are taking, along with wearing t-shirts and stickers that call for liveable wages, will raise awareness of these issues."

Ms Williams says Farmers needs to listen to their own family values and "return to the bargaining table" with a Living Wage for workers and their families.

This action follows strike action taken at Farmers last year.

Farmers retail store in Auckland. (File photo) Source: istock.com