Over the last few years, ticket prices at Curzon cinemas have soared by a third to £15 for a standard seat, while wages have barely gone up by 20 pence. The wage was just £6.62 an hour, until staff began campaigning earlier this year for union recognition, whereupon it inched up to a princely £7 an hour. That’s not enough to get a day’s travelcard, and makes living in Central London virtually impossible. Earlier this year, workers were suddenly told that their shifts would be dramatically cut, with no notice.
These are unacceptable conditions, and not what we expect from Curzon. This petition demands Curzon engage in meaningful dialogue with their staff and work towards a positive working environment for all - including bringing in the London Living Wage.
Mike Leigh has sent his support: “I use and love Curzon cinemas, and as a film-maker I have enjoyed their hospitality. So I am shocked to discover such an obscene difference between the exemplary way they treat their public and their cynical exploitation of their staff.”
As has Ken Loach: “'I wholeheartedly support the Curzon workers in their demands….. it is a fundamental human right to be recognised by a trade union. The Curzon should recognise BECTU, the film workers' union, and negotiate a proper settlement for the cinema's workers. Filmmakers value cinemas like the Curzon. We all want to see it become more successful. But that success cannot be at the expense of those who work there'.
I hope after reading this you'll share with your friends and family, and continue to spread the news. The Curzon staff want to say thank you so much for your support - it's already made a huge difference!
Curzon Workers on Twitter:
Curzon Workers on Facebook:
Article by Rowenna Davis, New Statesman from 2 April 2013:
Interview with a Curzon activist in the New Left Project from 3 April 2013:
Blog from ex-Curzon employee, Tania El Khoury, from 7 April 2013:
Article on zero-hours contracts at Curzon Cinemas, The Guardian from 9 August 2013:
Article in Time Out London from 9 August 2013:
Article in Movie Scope magazine from 10 August 2013:
Update on the campaign from John Brissenden, New Left Project from 12 August 2013:
Article in Solfed from 13 August 2013:
Article in Workers' Liberty from 17 August 2013:
Article by Rowenna Davis, New Statesman from 5 September 2013:
Update from BECTU on their application for recognition from 17 October 2013:
Feature in Workers' Liberty from 22 October 2013:
Article in The Independent from 24 October 2013:
Blog post on Stronger Unions (TUC) from 5 November 2013:
Column by Fred Paxton on Pure Movies from 11 November 2013: