JEJU, May 15 (Korea Bizwire) — Workers at Emart in Jeju are protesting against Emart Inc.’s expanded operation of its unmanned self-checkout system.
The Emart branch of the Korean Mart Labor Union and Jeju’s Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) held a press conference in front of the Jeju branch of Emart on Tuesday and strongly demanded the suspension of the expansion of the unmanned self-checkout system.
The union claims that after the introduction of the self-checkout system, Emart is indiscriminately reducing low-paid female workers suffering from increased work intensity, not to mention closing down its regular checkout system.
The number of Emart and Traders stores has increased by 16 over the past five years, and despite a 37 percent increase in sales over the past five years, the number of full-time employees has decreased by 212.
Kim Duk-jong, head of the Jeju branch of the KCTU, added that three executives of Shinsegae Emart received nearly 10 billion won in wages during that period.
Meanwhile, Shinsegae Emart began operating its unmanned self-checkout counters in April last year at three stores and is currently expanding the system to 60 stores.
Ashley Song (firstname.lastname@example.org)