SIPTU representatives today (Thursday, 20thDecember) signed an agreement with Signature Living, the management company of the soon to be opened George Best Hotel in Donegall Square, Belfast, ensuring its workers will have their collective bargaining rights recognised, will not be employed on zero hour contracts and will be paid a living wage. At a joint press conference involving union representatives and management in the George Best Hotel,Chairman of Signature Living, Lawrence Kenwright, said: “Signature Living is committed to being an excellent employer and protecting the rights of people in the workplace. We’ve banned zero hour contracts to give people peace of mind and security at work and are aiming to be a real living wage employer.” He added: “We’re not a typical hospitality company because we aren’t just motivated by making money. We are a company that has a clear social conscience – we see staff as the backbone of our success. Our workforce always has been and will remain one of our key priorities and, as we expand into new territories such as Belfast, we thought it was only right that we aligned with SIPTU to ensure we are offering the best terms and conditions. It is the right thing to do.”  SIPTU Organiser, Niall McNally, said: “In a sector where nearly three in four workers in Northern Ireland are paid below the living wage of £9 an hour, it is a breath of fresh air to see a company such as Signature Living, move to ensure good working conditions for its employees. “It is welcomed that the employer recognises the key role that the voice of workers, as expressed through their union, plays in ensuring a secure, fair and equitable workplace which allows both the business and workforce to prosper.” McNally added: “The commitment to ban zero-hour contracts, guarantee working hours and pay as a minimum the living wage, will result in secure employment for workers.”