Don’t be a strikebreaker!

The major grocery store chains here in Colorado are planning to attack their workers next week by forcing a strike. At issue is that they want to destroy the pensions of these workers so don’t break their strike by crossing the picket lines and into the stores to shop. All workers deserve a decent retirement!
United food and commercial workers

You can even help out on the picket line for a bit and show some solidarity with these people in their efforts to stop company cutbacks forced against them. You can also go do your own shopping for groceries at some of the ethnic grocery companies in Colorado and help save some of your own money in the meantime. Give yourself and union workers a break!

Here is what this strike will be about…

By Laura Chapin – UFCW Local 7 – For Immediate Release – 5/2/2009

The federal government has extended the deadline for the green – or fully funded – status for the major grocers’ pension fund from April 30 to June 30, giving the companies a second chance to do the right thing by their workers. The union has already agreed to the extension, so it’s up to the companies to meet the workers halfway.

Under the Worker Retiree and Employer Relief Act of 2008, trustees of a pension plans – both the union and the companies – have the option of extending their green status, or adequately funded status, for one year. If the company trustees fail to agree to extend the green status by the new deadline of June 30, the pension fund will go into a red status, meaning there will be insufficient funding to maintain the workers’ pension plan.

The union pension trustees have agreed to the one-year extension, but the company trustees have refused and instead proposed dramatic cuts to worker’s pension benefits. The benefits to be cut include eliminating the Golden Rule of 80, which raise the retirement eligibility from age 50 to age 62, eliminating the disability pension, and eliminating a $200 a month supplement between ages 60 and 62 years of age.

“We agreed to the extension because we want to give the economy time to recover,” said UFCW Associate Counsel Crisanta Duran. “Instead of meeting the workers halfway on the agreement, which would not have cost them a penny, the companies are choosing to use the under funded status as a bargaining chip and ask for almost 50% in cuts. This is not fair to the workers who are counting on the retirement they have earned.”

According to Safeway worker Arlys Carlson, “All we’re asking is that the companies take care of us the same way we’ve taken care customers all these years.”

UFCW Local #7 represents approximately 17,000 Colorado grocery workers at Safeway, King Soopers/City Market, and Albertsons. Negotiations began April 9 and will continue daily through the current contracts’ expiration on May 9.

For More Information:
Laura K. Chapin, (303) 425-0897 ext 302 ofc
(303) 885 – 1402 cell

The major companies simply want to destroy the unions with a strike. They have begun putting help wanted ads in the papers looking for scab workers to replace union workers. Sadly enough there are many who will try to grab these jobs and to Hell With Those Guys will be their attitude, since this is America, Land of the Screw the Others. Many are actually proud of themselves for being ‘smart’ when they do so. Wrong.

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2 Responses to Don’t be a strikebreaker!

  1. Avatar ed billings says:

    On May 21, 2009 we, the workers at King Soopers have asked our employer
    for an 8 to 10 week contract extension so that we can avoid a strike and
    continue negotiating. Steve DiCroce, the chief negotiator for King Soopers
    has refused to grant an extension.

    Please Email, please tell him that what he
    is doing to us is wrong.

  2. Avatar Ed Billings says:

    Why are Store Managers commanding their security officers to keep workers
    under surveillance?

    Why are the workers being harassed by anti-union workers?

    Why is management threatening anyone who tells
    Workers the truth about what the company is offering
    With the police?

    Because King Soopers is hiding the fact that they wish to
    Reduce pension contributions so that future generations won’t be able to
    retire, and it is because they STILL want
    Courtesy clerks to wait 3 years before they may obtain healthcare for
    themselves and their families.

    Tell King Soopers Corporate officials to stop attacking the workers.
    Tell King Soopers that workers deserve fairer treatment.

    Call (303)778-3100
    Or email
    Russ Dispense, Company president:

    Steve DiCroce, Labor Relations Director:

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