A group called “Spoons Workers Against Brexit” is also pressing for the Living Wage and trade union recognition for the firm’s 37,000 employees. A vociferous supporter of Brexit Tim Martin has been touring 100 of his 900 pubs speaking of what he believes to be the merits of leaving the EU without a deal on 29 March. On one pub visit he was accompanied by Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg chairman of the European Research Group.
In a statement released on Sunday (January 27) The Spoons Workers Against Brexit said: ‘We are Wetherspoon workers and supporters who are disgusted by the way that the company’s founder and chairman, Tim Martin, is exploiting his position to promote an extremely damaging no deal Brexit through pubs up and down the country. ‘He routinely labels Remain supporters the “metropolitan elite”; yet he himself is an incredibly wealthy man, accruing a tidy net wealth of almost £500,000,000 in no small part by paying his staff poverty wages. ‘To add insult, he forces staff members to distribute propaganda in favour of a hard Brexit – something which would drive down our working conditions and living standards even further. We refuse to propagandise for politics that will only do us harm if enacted. Studies have consistently refuted claims that immigration is linked to low wages. Migrants don’t drive down wages; but wealthy, exploitative bosses like Tim Martin do.’ ‘We are opposed to Brexit in its entirety and we support allowing the free movement of people so that everyone, regardless of nationality, has the right to live and work here.’
In response to the campaign JD Wetherspoon spokesman Eddie Gerson said: “They are entitled to their views. It should be noted that if a member of staff does not wish to put out the magazines, then they don’t have to. We have no issue with that.The magazine is more than 100 pages in total and the Brexit pages comprise a small number of those.”