Conflict has arisen between York Parties and their student club promoters, following accusations that the company failed to pay the promoters in full and ignored communications.
Adam James Hamilton, more commonly known as Adam Jay, is the owner of York Parties. York Parties is responsible for promoting and running the three YUSU-sponsored club nights: Kuda Tuesday, Tokyo Thursday and Vodka Revolution Sunday, as well as other events around York. York Parties are not employed directly by YUSU but by the clubs themselves.
Jay has been accused of paying student promoters as little as £1.50 for a night’s work of getting clubbers through the doors, as well as avoiding contact with these promoters when worries about low payment were raised.
One former Brand Manager of the Kuda Tuesdays club night, a student at the University of York, made a series of allegations about Jay’s treatment of both him, and other promoters, during their time working for York Parties.
“Every single sales rep that was promoting for Adam’s night for Kuda Tuesdays were also mistreated. The majority of my reps were also reps for other nights run by York Parties. They never received money until I sent a letter of grievance,” the promoter told Nouse.
The Brand Manager has also alleged that he is owed £3800, based on a contract which was promised by Jay, and that he was forced to pay promoters working for York Parties out of his own pocket, because Jay had failed to do so.
He has claimed that a contract had been agreed verbally, but would be formalised at a later date between Jay and himself. However he told Nouse that the targets set were so high that there was no realistic chance of getting the promised money.
Though they had agreed to asum of £200 a week if they managed to get at least 650 people into Kuda each week along with other targets, the student felt they did not get a fair financial settlement when targets were not reached.
“I was given targets which were impossible to reach, and even after trying so hard to reach them, Adam still refused to pay me and ignored all messages regarding my pay.
“I have been constantly been ignored by Adam and left in the dark about everything, despite being a Brand Manager.”
In a previous official letter of grievance sent to Jay, the student elaborated: “I had to get Kallum Taylor, YUSU President involved to help me get my money and he assured me I would get my money as York Parties are under a YUSU contract and any malpractice with paying students will come with consequences.
“Eventually [Jay] gave me £400 (£600 less than expected if it my pay was £200 per week) and the money for my rep’s commission.”
However, Jay responded to these accusations, highlighting York Parties’ investment in a computerised system to ensure promoters were paid fairly, as well as his personal efforts to settle the matter.
He told Nouse: “It was my belief that this matter was amicably resolved and that York Parties had gone beyond anything that was actually required of us in order to ensure that the individual was treated as fairly as possible.
“We have gone through the fine detail and numbers with YUSU and the complainant, who, at the end of that process, had accepted the value for work done at £238 and a total of £638.
“When you consider the practice of recruiting a rep consists of asking, ‘Would you like to be a rep for this event? Click on the URL and login,’ I’m sure you appreciate just how little was done. This wasn’t a case of us disputing one or two reps in order to pay targets–work simply wasn’t done.”
Jay said: “It had become my opinion that the individual thought that he could use York Parties’ relationship with YUSU as a reason to not do the required work of hit targets, but still be paid for it.”
However, another previous York Parties Brand Manager, also speaking under conditions of anonymity, was adamant that payments had been withheld from numerous promoters and other Brand Managers.
He said: “Ask anyone who promotes in York or knows anything about York’s nightlife about York Parties, and they will say to you, ‘Oh, are they the ones who don’t pay?’”.
Kallum Taylor, YUSU President, was involved in negotiations between York Parties and the complainant. He told Nouse: “At this time of year – when we’re looking at who to work with for next year’s club nights – we should be really careful with these complaints especially as we’ve only actually received one. If people have a genuine issue they should hit us up and we’ll look into it.
“On the one complaint we did receive – because there was no contract – I made no assurances that we’d get them ‘their money’ but instead said we’d do everything we could, which was pretty hard given that barely any targets had been met.
“Beyond those that had been met, and paid for, it was one word and against another.
“York Parties were under no obligation to pay a penny more once they had paid for the targets which were met, but still offered £200 as an acknowledgement of ‘something’ being done above what had been paid, despite it being at best immeasurable and, at worst, questionable.
“Now however, we’ll be making sure that all student staff employed by our partners for next year are under contract.”