Representing 30,000 Stop & Shop workers, five UFCW locals held a rally in Massachusetts on Wednesday to fight ‘draconian contract proposal.’
With their last contract having been expired since February, the United Food & Commercial Workers are fighting proposals from New England’s last fully unionized grocer that one union leader described as “the most draconian contract proposal we have ever had.”
On Wednesday, the UFCW—with support from other area unions like the SEIU and UNITE-HERE—held a rally outside a Stop & Shop in Chicopee, Massachusetts.
According to Masslive:
UFCW says Stop & Shop is proposing a bad deal for workers that would cut current benefits, including health and welfare and pension plans, replace Sunday time-and-a-half pay with a smaller wage premium and cut paid holidays, vacations and sick days for new hires. The union says the company has proposed bonuses in lieu of cost-of-living wage increases.
Stop & Shop management said it wants a deal that will allow it to grow its business in a competitive environment. Stop & Shop is the only large fully unionized food retailer left in New England. Company officials say it must have a deal that allows it to compete with nonunion employers like Big Y, Market Basket, Walmart, Whole Foods/Amazon, Costco and Aldi.
The UFCW has already taken a strike authorization vote from its membership, which means the union can strike at any time.
Related: If UFCW Strikes Stop & Shop, Teamsters Vow To Support