Cinema workers’ union BECTU has called for a national boycott of Picturehouse Cinemas until they agree a pay deal with workers at The Ritzy in Brixton, South London who are striking to win the London Living Wage.
Picturehouse Cinema bosses pulled out of talks with BECTU and unilaterally imposed a 4% pay deal, which still leaves almost all staff paid below the poverty line.
Ritzy workers’ sixth strike, on Saturday 7 June, saw solidarity actions at Picturehouse Cinemas elsewhere in London. Actor, documentary maker, and one-time footballer Eric Cantona joined the Brixton Ritzy workers as they protested outside the Hackney Picturehouse cinema.
Ritzy workers have received a lot of support and solidarity from other workers in the local area. They’ve received solidarity visits from striking college workers, local government workers, transport workers and firefighters. Workers at Lambeth Living, the Housing ALMO, responded to an article in their staff newsletter urging staff take advantage of reduced prices at the Brixton Ritzy Cinema, with a letter calling on people to join the boycott of Picturehouse.
AWL members and supporters gave out hundreds of leaflets in solidarity with the Brixton strikers outside Greenwich Picturehouse. We turned many cinema-goers away and a number asked for their money back for pre-paid tickets.