The 31,000 workers of the Stop & Shop grocery chain in New England have reached a tentative agreement with their employer and are headed back to work.
According to a statement issued by United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), the deal “preserves health care and retirement benefits, provides wage increases, and maintains time-and-a-half pay on Sunday for current members.”
Workers from more than 240 stores in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island walked off the job on April 11 to defend themselves against the company’s attempts to cut their pay, health care and retirement benefits. The workers, who are returning to their jobs today, will vote on the tentative agreement in the coming days.
AFSCME members from Council 4 in Connecticut, Council 93 in Northern New England and Council 94 in Rhode Island all rallied to voice their solidarity with their New England union sisters and brothers. The strike also garnered a tremendous outpouring of support from fellow workers and nonworkers alike.
AFSCME and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) together contributed $5,000 to a fund to help Stop & Shop workers. The unions also pledged an additional $500 each week for the duration of the strike.
According to the Boston Globe, Stop & Shop is one of the last remaining union shops in the industry and the largest grocery store chain in New England.
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#StopAndShopWorkers sent a message to their company by collectively standing up for themselves, their families, and good jobs. That message resonated not only with the company, but all of #America. Thank you to all of the hardworking UFCW members at Stop & Shop in #NewEngland for everything you’ve done: http://ow.ly/bm3P30ouMe6 #1u #unionstrong