10/31: Latest Updates on Los Angeles Supermarket Workers Strike!!!
By: Lee Siu Hin
- UFCW has switching their picket away from Ralphs to focus on pickiting Vons
- MTA Strikes continues.
The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) union, which represents 70,000
striking and locked out supermarket workers, said it was switching pickets
away from Ralphs to focus instead on Vons and Albertsons Inc.
UFCW president Rick Icaza told a news conference the union wanted to reward
shoppers, who have deserted all three supermarkets in droves, and increase the
pressure on Vons and Albertsons which it sees as the main adversaries in the
strike over health and pensions benefits.
For more information about the supermarket workers' strike, please check:
or call: (213) 379-3631
To know more about the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA), please
Report: Los Angeles Supermarket Workers Are On Strike!
1) UFCW Supermarket Workers Withdraw Pickets from Ralphs Stores (Press
Releasfrom UFCW Union)
2) St. Louis Grocery Workers End Strike (AP)
1) UFCW Supermarket Workers Withdraw Pickets from Ralphs Stores; Grateful
Workers Seek to Make Shopping Easier for Supportive Public
10/31/2003--Picket lines will be withdrawn by 12:00 noon from Ralphs stores
in Southern California.
Representatives of 70,000 striking and locked-out supermarket workers
announced this decision this morning in simultaneous press conferences in Los
Angeles, San Diego, Bakersfield, Santa Barbara and Palm Desert.
Supermarket workers will continue to be locked out of their stores by Ralphs
management in a regional labor dispute that is about to enter its fourth week.
Instead of picketing their own stores, Ralphs employees will supplement
picket lines at -- among other strategic locations -- Vons and Pavilions stores,
where employees are on strike, and Albertsons stores, where employees are locked
"Please help us in our struggle to save affordable health care by not
shopping at Vons, Pavilions and Albertsons during this dispute," said a Ralphs
worker. "We've taken down our picket lines at Ralphs for our customers' convenience."
Overwhelming popular support for the employees has resulted in empty
supermarket aisles and millions of dollars in losses for Ralphs (Kroger Co., NYSE:
KR), Vons and Pavilions (Safeway Inc., NYSE: SWY) and Albertsons (NYSE: ABS).
"The public has endured enough," a UFCW spokesperson said today. "Between the
MTA transit strike in Los Angeles and the supermarket strike and lockouts --
not to mention the horrific tragedy of the Southern California wildfires --
the people need some good news for a change. We are extremely grateful for the
public's support," the spokesperson continued.
Contacts: Ellen Anreder at 818-591-7480 and Barbara Maynard at 323-850-1356
CONTACT:UFCW Press Contacts Ellen Anreder, 818-591-7480 Barbara Maynard,
2) St. Louis Grocery Workers End Strike
By JIM SALTER, AP
ST. LOUIS (AP) - More than 10,000 union grocery workers headed back to work
after agreeing to a new contract Friday, ending a 3 1/2-week strike and lockout
at the region's three largest supermarket chains.
The agreement, reached Wednesday with the help of a federal mediator, was
approved 4,174 to 945, well over the required simple majority.
"Go back to work," Bob Kelley, president of United Food & Commercial Workers
Local 655, shouted to cheering members.
Two other union walkouts at grocery chains continued, one in Southern
California and the other covering stores in West Virginia, Kentucky and Ohio.
Friday's vote ended a strike at 97 Schnuck Markets, Dierbergs Markets and
Shop 'n Save Warehouse Foods stores on the Missouri side of the St. Louis area.
The new 47-month contract gives those earning at least $9 an hour raises of a
quarter a year in 2005-2007, while baggers get 10-cent raises. It also
eliminates medical benefit deductibles, caps prescription drug costs and gives the
lowest-paid employees a slightly better raise than a proposal rejected a month
The strike was authorized Oct. 7 after the initial contract offer was
rejected by 62 percent of workers, who initially planned to target only Shop 'n Save
for the walkout. But management at Dierbergs and Schnucks locked out their
workers until the strike was resolved.
The stores hired more than 9,000 temporary replacement workers during the
strike but still had to cut hours. Business rose sharply at smaller markets and
At the request of Gov. Bob Holden, federal mediator Roger Hendrix began
meeting last week with negotiators from both sides.
"Nobody wins in a strike," Kelley said Friday. "The company's lost millions
of dollars. Our members lost a lot of money."
Deborah Sercl, 46, a Schnucks clerk, said she was eager to get back to work:
"I'm one of those people that don't like to walk. Glad to get off that picket
The St. Louis area workers were the first of three groups of supermarket
employees across the nation to go on strike. Four days after the walkout began
here, about 70,000 workers at three California grocery chains - Albertsons,
Safeway's Vons and Kroger Co.'s Ralphs and Pavilions - went on strike or were
On Oct. 13, about 3,300 workers at Kroger stores in West Virginia, Kentucky
and Ohio approved a strike.
10/31/03 14:46 EST
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