These are not good times for retail. The German branches of the fashion chain H&M have also been closed for almost six weeks. In the middle of the crisis now the bad news: The group wants to cut 800 jobs in this country alone – and supposedly it is supposed to affect one group of people in particular.
The corona crisis does not leave the Swedish fashion giant without a trace. The H&M Group's net sales fell by a whopping 18 percent between December 2019 and December 2020. As early as October 2020, the company had therefore announced that it would revise the branch network and focus more on the online shop. In total, 800 jobs are to be cut in Germany alone.
These employees are to be fired
As Business Insider reports, the wave of layoffs should primarily hit the stores that generate little revenue. Basically sounds logical. However, there is also a prioritization among employees. According to this, mostly staff who cannot work during the busiest times – i.e. evenings and Saturdays – are to be dismissed. Personnel who, according to the magazine, are primarily characterized by one group of people: young mothers.
In this connection, the management proposed a volunteer program to the general works council. This is a severance program for employees who voluntarily leave the company in return for a severance payment. According to Business Insider, this paper identifies workers on parental leave as a useful group of people for layoffs.
What does H&M say about the allegations?
The group clearly distances itself from the allegations. The following statement was made to Spiegel magazine: “The volunteer program at H&M Germany is not primarily aimed at mothers and fathers.” Rather, the concept is intended for all interested employees from different employment relationships. It was also emphasized once again: "In this case we are proceeding very clearly according to the applicable legal provisions."
The corona crisis hit other companies even harder: