In a letter seen by Drapers, the fashion retailer said that the retail industry has been “significantly impacted” by high levels of “consumer uncertainty” and as a result it would take the decision to end fix-term contracts notifying staff with the contractually required four-week notice period.
It is believed that the staff affected, which covers teams from all departments including creative, store planning and store merchandising, were informed of the decision before the chancellor announced the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme that will see the government cover 80% of wages of employees unable to work as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
It is also understood that all store staff, who are now unable to work following the government’s lockdown of all non-essential stores, have been furloughed and have been put forward for government support.
Last week, Arcadia released a statement in which it said all store staff “remain employees” during this time and will be paid their normal pay for March plus any outstanding overtime payments, after which it said it would “review this situation”.
“The health and wellbeing of our employees, customers and communities remains our highest priority and we continue to closely follow the government guidelines,” it said.