July 13, 2024

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Talks resume Monday amid Food 4 Less strike permit – NBC Los Angeles

Talks resume Monday amid Food 4 Less strike permit – NBC Los Angeles

Negotiations are scheduled to resume Monday between Food 4 Less and the union representing about 6,000 workers, three days after employees finished voting overwhelmingly to allow the strike.

“Today’s overwhelming vote to authorize a strike sends a clear message to the company: We will not be divided,” the union bargaining committee said in a statement issued on Friday.

“We and our fellow members are in the stores day in and day out, generating record profits and keeping customers happy. But Food 4 Less is trying to intimidate, bully us and force us to accept a contract that is less than we deserve and far less than what our parent company, Kroger, is offering other unionized grocery workers in the area. The statement continued.

“We know our customers and communities stand with us, and if Food 4 Less/Foods Co. continues to manipulate our livelihoods and delay at the negotiating table, we will be forced to take action. We look forward to continuing negotiations on Monday where we will continue to stand together for the contract we deserve.” .

“We are disappointed with this outcome and look forward to having the union back at the table on Monday,” Salvador Ramirez, a spokesman for Kroger, the parent company of Food 4 Less, said in a statement. From the beginning, our focus has been on putting more money into our partners’ paychecks.

“We have delivered a historic offering that includes more than $70 million in industry-leading wage, health care and retirement benefit investments,” Ramirez continued. “Our associates are the heart of our company, and we will continue to do everything we can to balance investments in pay and overall employee well-being while keeping food affordable for our customers.

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Our stores will remain open for business to serve our communities.

The company announced last Monday that it had presented the union with an offer that included increasing salaries to $25.80 an hour by 2026 for a full-time cashier with four years of full-time experience, for an annual salary of more than $50,000. The proposal also would not increase employees’ health insurance costs during the three-year contract.

“At Food 4 Less/Foods Co., our hardworking and dedicated associates are the heart of our company, and our goal is to continue to provide market-competitive pay and benefits that we know are so important to our associates and their families.” Brian Kaltenbach, president of Food 4 Less/Foods Co., said in a statement:

“We will continue to do everything we can to balance investments in wages and public well-being while keeping food affordable for our customers.”

The demands of United Food and Commercial Workers Locals 8GS, 135, 324, 770, 1167, 1428 and 1442 include higher pay and safety improvements. Their contract expired on June 8.

The number of strike votes was not published.

A vote to authorize a strike does not necessarily mean that there will be a strike.

On May 22, local unions filed unfair labor practices charges against Food 4 Less/Foods Co., alleging that the company undermined negotiations and workers’ rights to representation. Union officials said the company engaged in illegal surveillance of workers, prevented them from participating in union activity, prevented them from speaking to union representatives, and unilaterally changed the contract.