The men were arrested at a demonstration which took place at the John Lewis store in Oxford Street on 13 December 2014. The demonstration had been jointly organised by the IWGB union and a group of John Lewis customers in order to protest against the company’s failure to pay the London Living Wage to contract cleaners. One of the men was alleged to have assaulted a police officer and the other to have obstructed the officer who arrested him.
However, the Crown Prosecution Service has now confirmed that the charges against both men have now been discontinued.
Mr Alberto Durango, General Secretary of the IWGB said:
“We held this protest in order to demonstrate John Lewis’ double standards. All partners are supposed to be equal but the fact that many of our members do not get the London Living Wage shows that some workers are more equal than others. Our members were entitled to protest peacefully against this injustice. We are glad this ordeal is now over and we will return to fight for decent pay for our members.”
Jane Lambert of John Lewis Customers Group said:
“Several customers who had signed the petition at Change.Org were present to support this lawful protest by the union and cleaners. We are very relieved to hear that the prosecution is not proceeding and that the two trades unionists and their families can now be spared any further distress.