Monday, June 28, 2010

Breaking News: New York Grocery Workers Union Reaches Tentative Agreement

“Union Solidarity Victorious As Grocery Workers Union Reaches Tentative Agreement"

Union Singles Out Stop and Shop for “Vulture-Like” Tactics


United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 and representatives for Pathmark, Stop and Shop and King Kullen Supermarkets reached a tentative agreement Monday evening in what a Union spokesperson termed a “victory for union solidarity.” The agreements mean that there will be no strike at any of the three area supermarkets.

“Negotiations are always difficult,” said Patrick Purcell, spokesperson for the Union. “In this case all three companies had three very different sets of economics. Pathmark and King Kullen had particular challenges and together we bargained hard and fair to resolve them. It was Stop and Shop that made these talks extremely difficult.”     

 The Union singled out Stop and Shop for their reprehensible bargaining tactics. “We all understood that Pathmark was dealing with some financial difficulty,” said Purcell. “Sadly, Stop and Shop swooped in like a vulture hoping to capitalize on Pathmark’s economics and brought us to the brink of a strike. Fortunately it back fired on them as their workers saw through their tasteless tactics and responded with an unprecedented level of solidarity,” Purcell continued. “The consequences of their actions will be felt for many years to come in the form of a more difficult labor-management relationship”   

Purcell announced that one casualty is the end of a labor/management legislative committee. In recent years, the union and Stop and Shop had partnered on legislative issues such as fighting against the bottle bill, a tax on plastic bags, a tax on sugary beverages, high debit card fees and advocating for new supermarket funding via city programs and federal stimulus money. “The Union and their members lobbied to help Stop and Shop receive $16 million in Federal stimulus money and they said thank you by arguing over nickels. That is not a partnership.”

The Union was victorious in many areas of the contract. The workers will not have paycheck deductions to cover their healthcare cost. They will receive wage increases that will put top rated clerks at over $50,000 a year. The entire cost of the pension will be funded by the employers and have no employee contributions. Sunday premium pay will have a modest change with minimal impact on the employees. Lastly, the amount of guaranteed weekly hours for thousands of workers was increased.

“The members of Local 1500 stood up as one Union with one voice,” Purcell noted. “They also showed a great understanding of the effect a strike would have on their customers, many of which have become their friends over the years,” Purcell said.

All agreements are subject to ratification by the members of Pathmark, Stop and Shop and King Kullen. A vote to ratify will be held in approximately 10 days.  Voting on the tentative agreement will be taking place on July 8, more details on locations will be available tomorrow.
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Monday Morning News

Stop & Shop Wokers Vote to Permit Strike
Negotiations continue, and no actual strike has been called. But the voting that finished Friday gives the negotiators of Local 1500 of the United Food and Commercial Workers union the OK to call for a work stoppage. 


Grocery Workers Contract Negotiations...
With the threat of a grocery worker strike over the July 4th holiday weekend looming, UFCW Local 1500 and company representatives resumed negotiations Monday morning. 


Interfaith Prayers Press for Food Justice in New York City


Surprise! Entrepreneaurs Have Pro-Union Slant


Biz Bigs Wage War on Union-Scale Match
A bill passed by the state Senate that was intended to force contractors utilities  to pay union-level wages has become a runaway train, with provisions so drastic that the state Assembly is planning sweeping revisions. 

Wal-Mart Aggressively Scouting Sites in Palm Beach County
Wal-Mart Stores, the nation's largest retailer, is aggressively scouting new store locations throughout Palm Beach County.


Wal-Mart Offers Plans for Dozens of Chicago Stores
The plan would let Wal-Mart expand into a large urban area at a time when its U.S. sales growth has been hot by a week economy


Retired Los Angeles Judge Will Hear Wal-Mart Distribution Case
A new judge has been assigned to oversee a lawsuit filed by a local group alleging the environmental review of its city's proposed Wal-Mart distribution center was faulty, according to a release from the city's attorney's office. 


Giant Eagle, Workers Reach Contract
A four-year agreement has been reached by Giant Eagle and Local 23 of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union. 


Kroger and United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 876
NOVI,Mich-- Associates of The Kroger Co. of Michigan, and affiliate of The Kroger Co. have ratified an agreement with United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 876.


Union Ousted at Berkeley Bowl: What's Next?


Alaskan Workers Unite for Solidarity Summer Picnic
Anchorage hosted one of the largest labor gatherings in the state Sunday, the Solidarity Summer Picnic


Shareholder Action Strengthens Rite Aid Workers' Coalition
Rite Aid workers from Pennsylvania, New York and California gathered in Harrisburg, PA. on June 23, before the company's annual meeting to rally for good jobs and show support for the five year struggle by more than 550 employees to form a union at Rite Aid's massive distribution center in Lancaster, Calif. 


Companies Haul Beans for Annual Food Bank Olympics
The Food Bank for Westchester was able to prepare more than 17,000 pounds of pinto beans for pantries as the result of its second-annual Give Back Olympics.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Breaking News: New York Area Supermarkets Authorize Strike

New York Area Supermarkets Authorize Strike

News from UFCW Local 1500

New York Area Supermarket Workers Authorize Strike

Job Action against "Corporate Greed" to Affect Entire Region as 4th of July Weekend Approaches

QUEENS VILLAGE, NY (06/26/2010)(readMedia)-- Over 16,000 supermarket workers have sent a clear message to the three major supermarket chains that are seeking to "wage a campaign of corporate greed against both the workers and the public": We are prepared to strike you. United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW ) Local 1500, New York State's largest grocery workers Union, held meetings with employees of Stop and Shop Supermarket, King Kullen Markets and A&P/Pathmark on Wednesday and Friday of this week and received unanimous support to authorize a strike against the three companies. The job action will affect 150 supermarkets and 16,000 workers as well as millions of New Yorkers preparing for 4th of July celebrations.
"Stop and Shop and the other two supermarkets are examples of the widespread corporate greed New Yorkers read about every day in the newspaper," said Patrick Purcell, spokesperson for UFCW Local 1500. "Their irresponsible push to squeeze every penny they can from the pockets of workers and shoppers is coming to an end now. Our members are prepared to walk the line on behalf of not just themselves and their families but for every customer that has expressed anger over the business practices of Stop and Shop and the other two Supermarkets."
UFCW Local 1500 Members pile into rooms to authorize a strike.
"Customers have been telling our members for weeks how tired they are of under staffed stores, empty shelves and long lines. They tell our members that they see how prices go up when cost such as fuel go up but that prices never go down when those cost go lower," said Purcell. "The customers have been victims of this greed and they can see that Stop and Shop and the other two companies are now going after the workers. The public is sick of corporate greed and so are our members. This fight will not just be about the workers but a statement on massive corporate greed against the general public," Purcell concluded.
Negotiators for Stop and Shop and the other supermarkets continue to seek reductions in the employees' health benefits and pensions while asking the workers to contribute more out of their paychecks for both. They are also seeking wage freezes, job elimination and refuse to give any new money for student scholarships. "I did not truly know what greed looked like until I sat across the table from Stop and Shop negotiators," said Greg Pasquale, a Stop and Shop employee from Poughkeepsie. "They have such little respect for their workers and their customers. All that matters to them is money and they seem to think they should have all it."

For consumers, the Union has sent up a web address that will lead them to public updates about the potential strike. The website is www.nysupermarkets.com.
United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 is based out of Queens Village and represents 23,000 grocery workers in the Metropolitan New York area.

For updates, continue to visit www.1union1voice.com or call the Contract Update Hotline:1-800-522-0456 ext.245
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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Last Two Week's Media Coverage:


  • Newsday: Supermarket union gives leaders power to call strike

    Supermarket union members at Stop & Shop and King Kullen Wednesday gave their leaders the power to call a strike as the expiration of their contract nears on Saturday. Officials of the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1500 have been in negotiations with those stores and Pathmark since...

  • People's World: Supermarket Workers Fight to Bag a Fair Deal

    NEW YORK - With the clock ticking towards a June 26 contract deadline, thousands of unionized supermarket workers are negotiating in an attempt to avoid a strike, but their employers at Stop and Shop, King Kullen and Pathmark are refusing to budge. Their union, United Food and Commercial...

  • Workers Independent News: UFCW Could Strike 150 Supermarkets In Southern New York State

    UFCW Could Strike 150 Supermarkets In Southern New York State Southern New York State could be facing a grocery workers strike. Sixteen thousand workers represented by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 are holding strike authorization meetings today. Contracts for the...

  • Crain's NY: Supermarket Union Readies Strike Vote

    Supermarket union readies strike vote Members of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1500 could walk off their jobs at 150 New York area Pathmark, Stop & Shop and King Kullen locations before the July 4 holiday. By Daniel Massey Published: June 23, 2010 - 1:16 pm...

  • Fox New York: Grocery Workers Threaten Strike

    Grocery Store Workers Threaten To Strike Updated: Tuesday, 22 Jun 2010, 3:40 PM EDT Published : Tuesday, 22 Jun 2010, 3:40 PM EDT BY LUKE FUNK MYFOXNY.COM - 16,000 workers at local grocery stores are getting closer to a possible strike. The current contracts with Stop and Shop, King...

  • Poughkeepsie Journal: Union of grocery store workers seeks strike authorization

    The labor union representing about 1,000 workers at Stop & Shop in the mid-Hudson Valley has called on them to attend a strike authorization meeting Wednesday as the end of a four-year contract approaches. A strike authorization doesn't mean a strike. It gives the group's leaders the OK...

  • Bronx Times: Grocery Workers Call Federal Mediator

    United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW ) Local 1500, New York State's largest grocery workers Union, has called Federal Mediators into negotiations with the three major supermarkets in hopes of avoiding a crippling strike that would effect over 150 supermarkets and 16,000 workers....

  • Just-Food: US: Ahold, A&P face strike action in New York

    US supermarket's Stop and Shop, King Kullen Markets and A&P are facing the prospect of strikes in New York state.

  • SN: N.Y. Union Warns of Possible Strike

    The union representing 16,000 workers at supermarkets in the New York Metro area has begun a campaign to notify local officials and consumers of a potential strike as its contract with employers approaches a June 26 expiration date.

  • PG: As N.Y. Metro Strike Looms, UFCW Moves to Alert Public, Law Enforcement

    United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) Local 1500, New York state's largest grocery workers' union, has begun notifying members of the public and local law enforcement of an impending strike that could affect over 150 Stop & Shop, King Kullen and A&P/Pathmark supermarkets and 16,000...

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GROCERY UNION HEADS TO AIRWAVES TO FURTHER MESSAGE OF LOOMING STRIKE

GROCERY UNION HEADS TO AIRWAVES TO FURTHER MESSAGE OF LOOMING STRIKE

Union will Notify Millions of New Yorkers of Potential Strike over the July 4th Weekend which would affect hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers

QUEENS VILLAGE, NY (06/23/2010)-- United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) Local 1500, New York State's largest grocery workers’ Union, has purchased airtime on New York’s number one AM Radio  station (1010WINS) to notify millions of New Yorkers of an impending strike with Pathmark/A&P, Stop & Shop Supermarket and King Kullen Markets.  UFCW Local 1500 is currently negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement with the three companies, though little progress has been made through months of negotiating.  The strike would affect supermarkets on Long Island, the Five Boroughs, Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Counties and may also possibly affect supermarkets in New Jersey and Connecticut. The contract expiration date is Saturday, June 26th.  Any potential job action will directly affect the 4th of July weekend for hundreds of thousands of customers.

Beginning on June 23rd, UFCW Local 1500 will run Public Service Announcements on 1010WINS, during “Drive-Time”.  The announcements will air during both the morning and evening commutes.  “This is a serious situation,” said Pat Purcell, a spokesperson for UFCW Local 1500. “We feel that it is our responsibility to notify the public of the gravity of the situation.” UFCW Local 1500 began notifying the public and law enforcement agencies of the impending strike last week. The release informed customers that fulfillment of their 4th of July grocery orders rests upon fragile and boiling labor negotiations. “Frankly speaking, Stop and Shop, King Kullen and Pathmark are playing with fire, and it’s their customers who will get burned.”
The looming strike would affect over 150 Supermarkets, 16,000 workers and hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers. “The three companies have put their corporate greed in front of doing what’s right, both for their employees, and for their customers. As members of the communities they do business in, these companies have a responsibility to their customers, right now, they’re essentially gambling with their customers’ 4th of July weekend plans.” Purcell concluded.

United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1500 will continue purchasing airtime and print media throughout the week to keep the Public informed of the looming strike. “We’ll continue to be honest with the public while Stop and Shop, King Kullen and Pathmark continue to avoid reality.” The Union has also set up a website which will notify the consumers with updates about the potential strike. The website is www.nysupermarkets.com.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 is based out of Queens Village and represents 23,000 grocery workers in the Metropolitan New York area
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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

New Stop and Shop Built with Taxpayer Money May Diminish Community’s Economic Growth

New Stop and Shop Built with Taxpayer Money May Diminish Community’s Economic Growth
Stop and Shop Supermarket Breaks Their Promise of Good Jobs to Rockaway, Queens Residents

In October of 2009, Stop and Shop Supermarkets received $16 million dollars in taxpayer funded Federal Stimulus money. The money was for a brand new, 55,000-square-foot Stop & Shop supermarket, located on Rockaway Peninsula. Once they received the money, they said “We are proud to be part of the economic resurgence of this community.” Unfortunately, pride has quickly turned into greed.

Stop and Shop is currently negotiating a new Union contract with UFCW Local 1500, which represents Stop and Shop employees throughout the metropolitan New York area. They are aggressively seeking to lower the quality of those jobs. Under Stop and Shop’s current proposal, employee wages would suffer, health benefits would be slashed, and employees would be stuck having to pay more for health care while pension benefits would be cut. Any new employees would be treated “second-class” workers. With these outrageous proposals, the workers at the new Rockaway supermarket would make far less than all other Stop and Shop grocery workers. The message Stop and Shop is giving is clear: they’ll take the taxpayer money, but won’t invest back into the community. It’s clear they just want to take advantage of the New Yorkers who financed their new store in Rockaway.

THIS IS NOT WHAT THE RESIDENTS OF
ROCKAWAY PENINSULA WERE PROMISED!
TELL STOP AND SHOP TO BARGAIN A NEW UNION CONTRACT THAT GIVES YOUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS THE WAGES AND BENEFITS THEY DESERVE!

Call Stop and Shop at 631-834-1476 or email them at: echacemarino@STOPANDSHOP.COM
And tell them your tax dollars should not fuel
Stop and Shop’s Greed!

A message from the 23,000 members of UFCW Local 1500
www.1union1voice.com
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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Butchers' Union to Honor Picket Lines If Grocery Workers Strike

News from UFCW Local 1500

Butchers' Union to Honor Picket Lines If Grocery Workers Strike
First Strike Authorization Meetings Set for Wednesday, June 23rd

QUEENS VILLAGE, NY (06/22/2010) -- United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) Local 1500, New York State's largest grocery workers’ Union, has received the support of UFCW Local 342, who represents Butchers as well employees from the deli and seafood departments at Stop and Shop, Pathmark and King Kullen. In the event of a strike at these stores, the members of UFCW Local 342 will join UFCW Local 1500 members on the picket line.

"The leadership of UFCW Local 342, led by President Richard Abondola notified us last night that they will honor all UFCW Local 1500 picket lines set up at Pathmark, King Kullen and Stop and Shop," said Patrick Purcell, spokesperson for UFCW Local 1500. "This will effectively shut down these stores going into the 4th of July weekend. Any statement to the contrary from these supermarkets would an outright deception of their loyal customers."

UFCW Local 1500 President Bruce W. Both thanked UFCW Local 342 for their support. "As they have been for so many years, President Abondola and the members of UFCW Local 342 continue to be a true symbol of the word solidarity."

In other action, the Union will be conducting their first strike authorization meetings this Wednesday, June 23 at the following locations:

- International JFK Airport Hotel: 144-02 135th Ave. Jamaica, NY 11436
- Sheraton Long Island Hotel (Suffolk Smithtown Room & Vanderbilt Room): 110 Motor Parkway, Smithtown, NY 11788

- Holiday Inn Mount Kisco: One Holiday Inn Drive [Exit 37-Saw Mill Pkwy.] Mount Kisco, NY 10549
All meetings are scheduled to start at 7:00 PM and conclude by 8:00 PM

Any media outlet wishing to attend should contact UFCW Local 1500 @ 1-800-522-0456

Any strike action would affect over 150 supermarkets and 16,000 workers. The strike would affect supermarkets on Long Island, the Five Boroughs, Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Counties with its effects being felt in New Jersey and Connecticut. The contract expiration date is Saturday June 26.

For consumers, the Union has sent up a web address that will lead them to public updates about the potential strike. The website is www.nysupermarkets.com.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 is based out of Queens Village and represents 23,000 grocery workers in the Metropolitan New York area



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Monday, June 21, 2010

Monday's News, After Noon....


Sales Up, Kroger Beats Expectations

The Kroger Company posted higher- than-expected quarterly earnings Thursday, suggesting that it was holding its own against competition from Wal-Mart stores and other grocery chains. 


Tentative Agreement Reached Between Giant Eagle & UFCW
The United Food and Commercial Workers Local 23 has reached a tentative agreement with Giant Eagle last week, nearly 6 weeks after bargaining began. 


Conciliation Talks Between UFCW and Loblaw Break Off With No Progress...Union to seek strike mandate from 30,000


Wegmans CEO Recognized By Business Association
Danny Wegman, chief executive officer of Wegmans Food Markets, received an award for his lifetime contribution to the retail food industry. 


Second Supermarket Shut Down Because of Suspicious Suitcase
Nassau County Police cordoned off the Waldbaum's shopping center on Merrick Road in Merrick on Saturday, around 5pm after a suspicious suitcase was left unattended in the middle of the parking lot amid and shopping carts and cars. 


Whole Foods Market and Personal Care Suppliers Bring Authenticity to Organic Labeling
AUSTIN,Texas- Whole Foods Market announced today that all personal care products and cosmetics making an "organic" claim sold in its U.S. stores must be third-party certified by June 1, 2011


Trader Joe's Clears Hurdle for Portland Store
The Federal Trade Commission has approved the sale of the former Wild Oats building on Marginal Way in Portland to Trader Joe's. 


New York Reaches Deal to Raise Cigarette Tax
Cigarette taxes in New York would jump by $1.60 a pack under a tentative deal reached between Gov.David A. Paterson and legislative leaders, which would give New York the nation's highest state cigarette taxes. 








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UFCW Local 1500 Calls Federal Mediator into Contract Negotiations Urges Supermarkets Not to Mislead Public about Affects of Strike

News from UFCW Local 1500

Grocery Workers Union Calls Federal Mediator into Contract Negotiations
Urges Supermarkets Not to Mislead Public about Affects of Strike

QUEENS VILLAGE, NY (06/21/2010)-- United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW ) Local 1500, New York State's largest grocery workers’ Union, has called Federal Mediators into negotiations with the three major supermarkets in hopes of avoiding a crippling strike that would affect over 150 supermarkets and 16,000 workers. Companies involved in the negotiations are Stop and Shop Supermarket, King Kullen Markets and A&P/Pathmark. The strike would affect supermarkets on Long Island, the Five Boroughs, Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Counties with its effect possibly being felt in New Jersey and Connecticut. The contract expiration date is Saturday June 26th. Any potential job action will affect the 4th of July weekend for hundreds of thousands of customers.

"We are doing everything we can to avoid a strike," said Patrick Purcell, spokesperson for UFCW Local 1500 "However, this is a fight between what our members need to survive versus the companies immoral greed. That is the fight: Need versus greed."

The Union also urged the supermarkets not to mislead the public regarding their ability to operate in the event of a strike, "It would be irresponsible to announce that everything will operate as usual in the event of a strike. To be less than honest to customers would be a real slap in the faces, this could affect sales long after any dispute is settled." said Purcell.

Purcell questioned the publics' willingness to shop in striking stores. "Does the public want their money exchanging hands with an inexperienced cashier?" Purcell asked. "Do they want to place their bakery orders with some store manager from New Jersey who is more accustomed to eating doughnuts than baking them? The public needs to consider shopping alternatives in the event of a strike. That is the bottom line." Purcell concluded.

"We do not want a strike" said UFCW Local 1500 Harry Hammin, a Pathmark worker and member of the Union negotiating committee. "However, the supermarkets seem to be doing everything they can to guarantee there will be a strike. If that's what they want, then that is what they will get."

For consumers, the Union has sent up a web address that will lead them to public updates about the potential strike. The website is www.nysupermarkets.com.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 is based out of Queens Village and represents 23,000 grocery workers in the Metropolitan New York area
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Friday, June 18, 2010

Media Advisory: Grocery Union Urges Consumers to Use Caution When Placing 4th of July Food Orders

News from UFCW Local 1500

Grocery Union Urges Consumers to Use Caution When Placing 4th of July Food Orders...
Picket Lines and Staff Shortages Would Affect Service

QUEENS VILLAGE, NY (06/18/2010)(readMedia)-- United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500, New York State's largest grocery workers' Union, is urging shoppers to exercise "caution" as they begin to place their food orders for the upcoming Fourth of July holiday. The "Consumer Alert" is part of the Union's campaign to notify the public of a potential strike that could affect over 150 supermarkets and 16,000 workers. With contracts set to expire Saturday, June 26th, any potential job action could affect the 4th of July weekend for tens of thousands of customers. Companies involved in the negotiations are Stop and Shop Supermarket, King Kullen Markets and Pathmark, which is owned by A&P (Great Atlantic and Pacific Company).

"Due to the potential of a strike over the Fourth of July weekend, we urge shoppers to consider alternatives when placing their food orders at Pathmark and the other two companies," said Patrick Purcell, spokesperson for UFCW Local 1500. "Customers have a right to know what is happening. In the event of a labor dispute, no matter what "contingency plans" the three companies will try to implement, no shopper should feel comfortable putting their deli, bakery, floral or produce orders in the hands of a Supermarket whose workers are on strike."

"The area that would be affected is home to over one million union households" Purcell explained. "Those families will never cross a picket line. Nor will the friends and neighbors of the workers who are on strike. Should there be a strike or the continued threat of a strike at Pathmark and the other Supermarkets, the best solution for everyone would be to seek other shopping options till the dispute is resolved."

Greg Pasqual, a Stop and Shop worker from Dutchess County, explained the problem. "You can't replace 80% of your workforce expecting to deliver the same quality products and customer service shoppers demand from Stop and Shop and the two other Supermarkets."

"Even if they [Stop & Shop and Pathmark] transfer help from Connecticut and New Jersey into the striking stores, that would just hurt customers who shop at those Supermarkets in New Jersey and Connecticut. King Kullen does not even have that option and would face massive staff shortages. We need to avoid this strike so no one, especially our customers, will have their Holiday weekend ruined," Pasquale concluded.

For consumers, the Union has sent up a web address that will lead them to public updates about the potential strike. The website is www.nysupermarkets.com.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 is based out of Queens Village and represents 23,000 grocery workers in the Metropolitan New York area.

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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Release: Union Begins Campaign to Notify Public, Law Enforcement of Looming Strike...

News From UFCW Local 1500: Union Begins Campaign to Notify Public, Law Enforcement of Looming Strike

Clock Winding Down for 16,000 Grocery Workers in Metro NY Area

QUEENS VILLAGE, NY (06/16/2010)(readMedia)-- United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500, New York State's largest grocery workers Union, has begun the process of notifying the public and local enforcement of a potential strike that could affect over 150 supermarkets and 16,000 workers. With a contract expiration date of June 26th, any potential job action could affect the 4th of July weekend for hundreds of thousands of customers. Companies involved in the negotiations are Stop and Shop Supermarket, King Kullen Markets and A&P/Pathmark.

"We have a responsibility to inform the public and local law enforcement that you could see a widespread strike throughout the Five-Boroughs, Long Island, Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Counties," said Patrick Purcell, spokesperson for UFCW Local 1500. "A strike in the supermarket industry will have a serious impact on communities in multiple ways. We intend to partner with elected officials and law enforcement to minimize the inconvenience."

"A strike could be avoided if the companies would come to the table with respect for their employees and bargain in good faith. Respect for the workers by these companies has been AWOL during these negotiations," Purcell continued. "All they have talked about is cutting health benefits, cutting pensions, wage freezes, etc. It's corporate greed, pure and simple. People in this country, workers and consumers alike, are tired of greedy companies and their bailouts who continue to demonstrate disrespect for their consumers and workers. The members of UFCW Local 1500 will take a stand against these companies and will send them a message: Greed Stops Here!" Purcell concluded.

Robert Schnarrs, a Stop and Shop worker on Long Island and member of the UFCW Local 1500 negotiating team, made his opinion clear: "Over our dead bodies will we cave into company greed!"

Actions that the Union will begin to take will include, but are not limited to, notifying local Police Precincts, County Police and State Police. County Executives and other elected official will be notified as well.

For consumers, the Union has sent up a web address that will lead them to public updates about the potential strike. The website is www.nysupermarkets.com.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 is based out of Queens Village and represents 23,000 grocery workers in the Metropolitan New York area. Contracts with additional employers such as D'Agostinos, Gristedes, Key Food and Shop Rite.  Contracts representing 6,000 workers will expire in September.

Permalink: http://readme.readmedia.com/Union-Begins-Campaign-to-Notify-Public-Law-Enforcement-of-Looming-Strike/1432658
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Monday, June 14, 2010

Monday News after Noon...


FDA Needs Help Inspecting Food Imports

SAN ANTONIO- As food safety legislation continues to be considered in the Senate, the Food & Drug Administration finds itself lacking resources needed for inspections of imported foods and other products. 


Wegmans CEO recognized by business association
Danny Wegman, cheif executive officer of Wegmans Food Markets, received an award for his lifetime contributions to the retail food industry. 


Wegmans of Collegeville Promotes Available Full-Service Catering Options
The local epicurean experts of the high-quality grocery outlet, Wegmans extend their invitations to assist area residents in all facets of summer entertaining


Kroger says it has deal to avert Michigan strike
Kroger Co. says it's reached a tentative three-year agreement with a labor union, averting a strike by 14,000 workers at 133 stores


Whole Foods Eyes Scotland Expansion


Canaan Elementary gets a helping hand from Hannaford
Canaan Elementary School Principal, Steve Swindells,recently received a $1,000 dollar check from Skowhegan Hannaford. Canaan Elementary School received the bonus for raising the most money for area schools through the Hannaford Helps Schools program. 


Cargo Workers Stage Job Actions
SEATTLE- Backed by Teamsters Local 117, workers at a several loading companies in the Puget Sound region where scheduled to stage job actions Friday at distribution centers operated by Safeway, Fred Meyer and Unified Grocers, among others. 




Bartenders at Foxwoods Resort Casino are trying to form a labor union under the supervision of the U.S. government after failing to organize under the rules of the Indian tribe that owns the casino. 



More: Foxwoods Resort Casino Faces New Demand for Union...[Daily Caller]



In China, Unlikely Labor Leader Just Wanted a Middle-Class Life
Tan Guocheng uis hardly a self-styled labor leader, but last month an hour into his shift at Honda factory in the southern city of Foshan, Mr. Tan pressed an emergency button that shut down his production line. "Let's go out on strike!" he shouted. 


Students Stage Walkout over MetroCard Elimination
About 1,000 students from 23 high schools in Brooklyn, the Bronx and Queens met at a rally at City Hall Park, marched across the Brooklyn Bridge and briefly rallied at the Transit Building on Jay Street in Brooklyn to protest the planned cut


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Friday, June 11, 2010

Weekly One-Liners: News from the Week of June 6

 Due to Contract Negotiations, we'll be releasing the Morning Read twice a week until our Contract is settled with King Kullen, Stop and Shop and Pathmark.  Thank you.

Union workers at Kroger stores in Michigan were still working on Thursday despite their contract expiring. The workers, represented by United Food and Commercial Workers Local 876 here, in a statement said they were fighting “concessionary demands from Kroger,” including defunding a trust account that pays for health benefits. [Supermarket News]

Supermarket Strike Looms
A Spokesperson for Queens Village-based Local 1500 of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union characterized contract negotiatons with the major area supermarket chains as "not going good," on contracts that will expire on Saturday, June 26.

A Kroger spokesperson told Local 4 union employees will take a final vote on the contract next week. Workers will be getting a visit from a union representative before the vote. 

Royal Ahold NV, the operator of Stop & Shop and Giant grocery chains, said net profit rose 45 percent in the first quarter as costs stemming from the bankruptcy of its BI-LO subsidiary were less than feared. 

After negotiating for six months with no end in sight, union members voted to approve a strike last week. Macy's agreed to come to the table for mediation shortly thereafter. 

Walmart Eyes Growth in Russia
Walmart, the world's largest retailer, has signaled its continued interest in establishing stores in Russia, albeit in  a characteristically unusual way. 

A grocery chain with nine stores in the area had hired Saint Consulting Group to secretly run the antidevelopment campaign. Saint is a specialist at fighting proposed Walmarts, and it uses tactics it describes as "black arts".

Online grocer Peapod, a division of Ahold, is hosting its first community forum today in the Chicago Lawn neighborhood to address food deserts, large geographic areas that have no or distant mainstream grocery stores. 

Cub Foods is taking on Walmart stores in a fight over the busy St.Paul-Midway shopping district.

Supervalu and Safeway Helped Bolster Anti-Walmart Protests. So What?
Recently, a WSJ investigation revealed that supposedly grassroots opposition to construction of some Walmart stores was funded and facilitated by operatives working for its grocery competitors, including Supervalu and Safeway.

Full investigation @ WSJ.

CHICAGO, IL--The vote to rezone an area on the Far Sound side to make way for the city's second Walmart retail store was delayed for a second time.

Shoprite opens eighth Maryland location
The new store will be located in the Chesapeake Square Shopping Center, which is owned by principals of the Fedder Company and the Briarwood Group. 

Mill Valley's second Whole Foods Store to open
Whole Foods will debut its much-anticipated second Mill Valley store, a green open-air-style marketplace featuring locally grown products. Officials said they weren't certain, but Mill Valley is likely the smallest town to have two Whole Foods stores. 

Whole Foods Continues Distribution Deal with UNFI
Specialty food distributor United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI) will continue to be the primary distributor for Whole Foods Market, which accounted for approximately 33 percent of UNFI's sales last year, until 2010.

Fairway Cafe, a restaurant located within the landmakr grocery store on the Upper West Side, has yet to confirm rumors of its closure, but already a handful of neighbors have sprung into action. 

Syracuse Wegmans stores seeing produce from down on the farm--the Wegmans farm.
Northeasterners normally must wait until July for local ripe tomatoes, but some upstate New York Wegmans shoppers received theirs a lot earlier.

More than 2,400 students plan to walk out of school at noon today to protest the elimination of free MetroCards-- and leaders from the city's political wired transit and teachers unions will be there to cheer them on.


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Thursday, June 3, 2010

Tues, Weds & Thursday Morning One-Liners: Aldi's breaking into NYC later than sooner...


Progressive Grocer
: 16,000 NY Grocery Union Contracts set to Expire June 26

(you can find all media outlets who covered our release here)

At Co-op City, Trash Piles Up as Workers Go on Strike

Mountains of trash bags sprouted across Co-op City on Tuesday as residents and office workers rushed to perform basic maintenance tasks left undone by more than 500 unionized janitors, groundskeepers and parking attendants who went on strike on a contract dispute. 


UMass Memorial, Food Workers Union reach tentative contract
UMass Memorial Health Care and the union representing 1,300 of its workers have tentatively agreed to a two-year contract, avoiding the threat of a strike. 


Shaw's workers win support in Sommerville (MA)
Striking Shaw's workers took their fight through Somerville this week for support from labor and faith groups and a protest in Twin Cities. 


Oh the Aldi NYC thing again,

Supermarket News: Aldi to Open in NYC in 2011

The discounter has agreed to locate in the Rego Park II development in Queens, with the store scheduled to open in early 2011. Aldi had previously hoped to have arrived in New York as soon as last year, but plans for its initial store fell through, company officials said. The company is now seeking to hire staff for the Queens store. 

More @ Queens Central: Aldi Supermarket to open at Rego Center
The discount supermarket chain plans to open its first New York City store at the Rego Park ll shopping center at 65-35 Junction Blvd. in Queens, in 2011

Progressive Grocer also covered Aldi's NYC Plans.

Fowl is fair! Key Food's chicken relabeling is completely kosher.
A Brooklyn Heights Key Food that has been repeatedly accused of changing the "sell-by" date on meat is off the hook this week after the state revealed that the relabeling practice is completely legal. 


Workers at 3 MMJ Businesses in Oakland Unionize
California- Workers at three medical marijuana businesses in Oakland will announce Friday that they have unionized, another step in a concerted campaign aimed at bringing legitimacy to a once-hidden sector of the state's economy and boosting the marijuana-legalization initiative.


A crowed showed up last  week at Starrett City to protest Walmart's proposed first New York City superstore.


Unions v Wal-Mart
The Economist looks at an old unions stronghold battles the bigger retailer.

Undercitting its rivals: Wal-Mart slashing prices, restoring some basics.
Wal-Mart is counting on $1 ketchup bottles and sub-$4 cases of Coke to get its low-price mojo back.


Wal-Mart Expecting a Break Out?
Wal-Mart's price action is below this important level, which makes the stock difficult to buy, as there will certainly be resistance as it approaches its 200 day moving average.



Wal-Mart says recalled Miley Cyrus jewlery was not intended for children.
In a statement released by Wal-Mart, they announced that the line of Miley Cyrus jewelry was not intended for children. That comment has been met with skepticism by many mothers of tween girls who, for the past four years, have been sleeping, eating, breathing and buying everything Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus.

1.2 million un-employed workers will lose benefits since congress failed to act.

Politics, City & Everything in between...
Schneiderman for Espaillat, UFCW Local 1500 for Levine
UFCW Local 1500 continued its early endorsement streak by becoming the first labor union to endorse in the 31st SD race, throwing its weight behind District Leader Mark Levine.

Bronx May Land Fuel Alternative
The Bloomberg administration is pushing to build New York's first public alternative-fuel station to pump natural gas, ethanol and biodiesel.

Apparently Skinny People Shop at Whole Foods:
Researchers at the University of Washington further illustrate the link between poverty and obesity.


Co-op City workers in Bronx to Strike Over Proposed Wage Freeze
Building workers at Co-op City in the Bronx will strike this morning, seething over a four-year wage freeze proposed by management of the massive complex, union officials said Monday night. 


Race against time to keep MTA workers as layoffs loom
Hundreds of bus drivers and other transit workers could get a reprieve from impending layoffs if MTA and union officials can negotiate a deal-but the clock is ticking.

Bloomberg eliminates Teachers' raises, saves 4,400 jobs: Crains NY Business.




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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Press Release: NY Largest Supermarket Union Seeks to Avoid Strike...

States Largest Grocery Workers Union Seeks to Avoid Strike with Supermarkets;
Union Contracts Representing 16,000 Metro NY Workers Set to Expire June 26th.

QUEENS VILLAGE, NY (06/01/2010)(readMedia)-- The President of the State's largest grocery workers Union is hoping to avoid all the anxiety that workers and consumers go through with strike votes and last minute agreements between Unions and management. He just hopes that the companies, Pathmark, Stop and Shop, King Kullen and Gristedes feel the same way.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 President Bruce W. Both is the lead negotiator for 16,000 unionized grocery workers whose contracts are set to expire at midnight, June 26th, 2010 However, starting June 9th, the Union will begin a series of meetings with their membership to update them on the current status of negotiations and announce dates for possible strike authorization meetings. The 16,000 Union members employed by these companies work throughout Long Island, the five boroughs, Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Counties.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 is based out of Queens Village, NY and represents 23,000 grocery workers in the Metropolitan New York area. Contracts with additional employers such as Key Foods and Shop Rite, covering an additional 5,000 workers, will expire in September, 2010.
President Both stated "We believe that a win-win situation is within the reach of the parties involved in these negotiations and that un-necessary posturing will only lead to worker and consumer anxiety."

"The members of UFCW Local 1500 have always been united behind their Union," Both added. "The employers understand the strong solidarity between the Union and its members. This solidarity has helped us to avoid a major strike in this industry for the past 30 years. We have consistently reached fair agreements," Both pointed out. "However with the difficult economic times people have had over the last two years, we feel it would benefit the entire region to reach an early agreement," Both concluded.

The key issues during these negotiations are healthcare benefits, pension fund financing, wage increases and the utilization of part time workers.


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