Monday, June 17, 2013

UFCW Local 1500 Members Recognized at Hurricane Sandy Exhibit

Like all of us, UFCW Local 1500 Members working at Fairway in Red Hook were severely impacted during Super Storm Sandy....They (and Fairway) are now being recognized for helping rebuild their community after the super storm hit New York.  

The AFL-CIO has opened an exhibit recognizing and documenting the work of organized labor during and after Super Storm Sandy.  Photographs of workers and volunteers during the storm are posted along with reconstruction efforts.  Among the photos throughout the exhibit, photos of Red Hook Fairway workers and a story featured in our March edition of The Register, are up for display.

UFCW Local 1500 members working at Fairway in Red Hook helped clean up the ravaged store, then helped re-open the Brooklyn cornerstone store after a three-month closure due to severe damage.  Throughout the three-month closure at their Red Hook store, Fairway kept all their workers employed at other Fairway locations throughout the tri-state area, offering a free shuttle service for local workers.

You can check out the amazing exhibit here:

Graduate Center for Worker Education
25 Broadway, New York City 7th Floor

For more information contact Ed Murphy at 518-463-2141 or

Sandy Stories exhibit will be open until June 30, 2013

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Friday, June 14, 2013

Top 11 Industry Stories This Week!


1.  Rumors: Yucaipa is said to be mulling the purchase of the Fresh & Easy chain.

2. The Senate passed the Farm Bill this week...Here's what's in it, and here's how your Senators voted.

3. Labor Speech Ruling in California: The U.S. Supreme Court said Monday it will not review a case involving the constitutionality of labor-related speech by UFCW Local 8 on private property in California.

4.  The Fresh Market cites success in their California expansion.

5.  No Purchase Necessary: A&P has settled a charge it violated NYS laws conducting a sweepstakes promotion earlier this year, in March.  

6.  Ford & the UAW are negoitating a new "wellness" program, where workers will get paid more if they meet certain wellness goals.

7.  Could NYC have 4 Casinos in 7 Years? See what Gov. Cuomo said.

8. Exclusive: Walmart's hiring strategy: Hire Temps....YEAR ROUND.

9. Walmart accepted clothing from banned Bangladesh factories.

10.  Fairway posted a 4Q Loss...but is still on the upside of grocery stocks.

11.  Your Dad definitely wants a Union-Made Gift! Check out AFL-CIO's Father's Day Gift guide!

Thanks and to all the Fathers out there....Happy Father's Day!

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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Some Upcoming Events!

General Membership Meeting: Weds. 6/12!
This is the second to last General Membership meeting before contracts expire w/ King Kullen & Stop & Shop! 

You know now is the time to get active within YOUR Union.  With contracts set to expire in 11 weeks, now is not the time to miss Union meetings. Come to your General Membership meeting thisWednesday, June 12th @ your Union office, 425 Merrick Ave. Westbury, NY 11590.  

At the meeting, talk to your coworkers and Union leadership about what concerns you in the next contract, ideas and make your voice heard before we head into negotiations!  You can RSVP to the meeting here.

Attention all Social Media users!  UFCW International has launched a new contest!

The UFCW International has launched a union-wide "UFCW- Made" Facebook photo contest! Any UFCW members who post photos of themselves or co-workers at their workplaces and/or holding UFCW-made products--directly to the Facebook contest app here: are entered in a contest to win up to $500 in prizes!  Find out more details and rules here. 

If you're uploading a pic, let us know! Email us, or post it on our facebook page!  We'll spread the word and promote your photo! The photos with the most votes will win prizes up to $500! Good luck!

Mark your calendars, July 10th is our annual Summer BBQ & Blood Drive! Join us on Wednesday, July 10th for a fun day of community service and a great summer BBQ!
RSVP is necessary, click here to RSVP and for info on donor criteria!

Thank you again for staying connected with your union.  Stay united and stay informed!

For any questions, comments or suggestions, please reply to this email!


What you can do digitally right now: 

Like us on Facebook and join the discussion:

Follow us on Twitter: @ufcw1500

Tell your coworkers to sign up for updates here. Or by forwarding this message to them.

Find our archived news on our blog.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Amish Market's Owner is Heading to Jail Because of Brave Workers

By: Joseph Fedele

Adem Arici is heading to jail and the brave workers from his six-store chain are finally rejoicing that justice has been served.  In 2009 UFCW Local 1500 helped workers at The Amish Market re-collect over $1.5 million in stoel wages.  The NY Department of Labor's wage theft investigation found Arici and his business partners were failing to pay their employees correct wages and not paying employees overtime.

Shortly after, federal prosecutors began examining Arici's entire business, including tax records for the six-store chain.  It was found that Arici and his business partners were not only stealing wages from their employees, but they were fudging the books in NYC for years, withholding over $50 million in taxes.
Amish Market workers regain over $1.5 million in unpaid wages [2009]

via NY Daily News:
The Turkish-born grocer is the seventh member accused in the scam to plead guilty. Arici and his fellow cheats skimmed cash from grocery sales to avoid paying taxes, paid undocumented foreign workers in cash and submitted fraudulent tax returns, authorities said.

As workers, we all know how real wage theft is.  Although it may not get as much public attention as it should, it's occurring every day in throughout our country.   Many businesses today have an inherent belief that basic labor laws do not apply to them.  Whether it's stealing wages, or closing stores to avoid unionization, the trend to "save a buck" by violating workers rights continues to grow with little resistance.  Though on a day like today when a corrupt Adem Arici is sentenced to jail for fixing his books and not paying taxes, it should be noted that the light was shined on his dark & dirty business by a small band of union Organizers and a group of brave workers standing up against injustice.  Without the tremendous courage from the workers at Amish Market, who fought back against their boss stealing wages, Adem Arici may not have been sentenced to jail for evading taxes.

As prevalent as wage theft is, NY Republicans STILL want to repeal the Wage Theft Prevention Act.  Why? So businesses can continue to profit from cheating their workers out of money they are owed.  This isn't a partisan political issue,  it's a people issue.  If you believe workers should be paid the amount agreed upon when hired, simple as that you agree with the Act.  End of story.

NYS Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman, said it best on wage theft, "An employer who knowingly violates labor laws is not an upstanding businessman saving a few bucks.  In the end, he is hardly any different from the pickpocket, and the law should treat him as such."  The pickpocket is heading to jail, and New York has the proud, brave, and courageous gourmet grocery workers to thank.

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