Friday, May 23, 2014

Guest Blog: Mrs. Green's CEO Steps Down

By: Yesica Mendez, Unlawfully Terminated Worker, Mrs. Green's Natural Market

Yesterday news broke that Mrs. Green's CEO, Robin Michel, was being forced to step down from her position.  The news was reported by Food Trade News.  You can imagine the joy we all felt after we heard the news.

Under Robin Michel's leadership we all (including you) saw huge changes at the store.  Whether it was moving products to different areas in the store for no clear reason, or instituting new cold management techniques that affected the overall morale at the store.

We all watched Mrs. Green's transform from a friendly neighborhood grocery store that focused on customer service and providing a healthy environment to work in, to a strict corporate environment, where we couldn't escape stresses of minimal tasks.  That's when we decided to band together and demand change from Mrs. Green's.

Mrs. Green's unacceptable anti-worker behavior was then elevated to new heights, and was exemplified by its merciless campaign the company launched in April 2013 that instilled fear in all of us.  Fear and intimidation were the key ingredients leading to the union's narrow election defeat, and federal labor charges were then filed against the company on our behalf.

Her remorseless leadership culminated in January when the eight of us were unlawfully terminated.  Most of you had gotten to know us and build relationships with us, having 5-12 years of experience in the store.  We were left out in the cold during a frigid winter on a picket line, simply for standing up for our rights at work.

Gladly, we have had the tremendous support from you, the Mt. Kisco community, including New York State Assembly Members David Buchwald and Shelly Mayer.  We couldn't have gotten to the position we are at now without it.  We've been assured that community, labor and faith leaders will continue to stand with us, and boycott Mrs. Green's until they end their labor dispute.

Thank you for the support.  We hope the new CEO of Mrs. Green's Natural Market will take this opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the past, and respect the rights of all workers.

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