JD Sports to investigate conditions at “prison-like” warehouse

Sports retailer is under fire following Channel 4 expose.

British sportswear retailer JD Sports Fashion (LON:JD) has come under fire following the Channel 4 documentary that aired on Wednesday night, where workers claimed it was “worse than a prison”.

The five-week undercover investigation highlighted harsh practices at the warehouse, as well as intense surveillance and heightened job insecurity among agency workers.

“Whilst we do not believe it to be an accurate reflection of our culture, the vast majority of our people or our standards of practice and procedures, we will be launching an investigation into the implementation of our policies at our Kingsway facility,” the retailer said in response to the channel 4 documentary.

“While we maintain that the policies and procedures in place are robust and fair, it is clear that we need to do better in their implementation.

“In the short term, we intend to re-train all supervisory and security employees at the facility, as a matter of urgency, to ensure that those policies are correctly reflected across the workplace.”

The expose came a year after the Guardian report on the treatment of staff at JD Sport’s rival Sports Direct (LON:SPD).

Chair of parliament’s business committee, Iain Wright, told Channel 4 News he was disgusted by the findings and said JD’s management should explain itself in front of parliament.

Frances O’Grady the TUC general secretary has said it has become “increasingly clear that Sports Direct wasn’t just one bad apple, and that terrible working practices are taking place across the UK. The government needs to look seriously at how this sort of behaviour continues to take place in today’s Britain.”

Since the undercover documentary, JD Sports has said it plans to review of all our policies, their communication and implementation at the site, with the clear aim not only to continue the improvement of the facility, but also to think about the future structure of employment at the site,”

JD Sports shares fell 7 percent in early trading before recovering to trade up 0.7 percent by 1035 GMT.