UFCW Local 1059 has informed us that its members voted down the third Fully Recommended Tentative Agreement this week. We understand the union also received strike authorization. We are disappointed in the outcome of the vote. We are also disappointed in the actions and messages that the union has been sharing with you over the last several days, including the letter the union recently sent announcing the election results. We need to set the record straight on the statements they included in the letter.
The Union’s Misleading Statements
|The membership is demanding fair and equitable wages.
|We are committed to investing in the whole person by providing wage increases, high-quality, affordable health care, and a pension benefit for retirement.
Our latest offer included an investment of more than $120 million in wage increases over the life of the three-year agreement. It also included an investment of $64 million annually in healthcare and a $23 million investment annually in pension benefits. In total, which is more than $380 million dollars over the course of three years that we are investing in you, our associates. The tentative agreement provided wage increases for all associates.
Did the union communicate the value of our latest offer?
|The next step is now in Kroger’s hands.
|We met and worked with the union bargaining committee throughout the negotiation process to reach three Fully Recommended Tentative Agreements. As you can see, our total compensation package of wage increases, affordable healthcare, and pension benefits for retirement was a good offer. We have communicated with the union and expressed our interest in returning to the table to get the agreement that is good for everyone.
|Is Kroger willing to come back to the table and recognize what the Kroger membership has sacrificed …….
|The union Fully Recommended this latest Tentative Agreement for ratification that included significant investments in wages, healthcare, and pension benefits. In our opinion, the union and company reached an agreement that met the needs presented at the table.
|Strike preparation and planning has already been underway
|During negotiations, there is always uncertainty for both you and the company until an agreement is reached. We have been open and transparent with you during this process, so you know what we are doing and why.
One of those things we regretfully must do is prepare for a strike. To be very clear, we hope that does not occur. But we must be able to keep Kroger operating and that’s why you may see us advertising for and hiring temporary workers.
|…since Kroger characterized their proposal as Last, Best, and Final Offer.
|Yes, it was the company’s Last, Best, and Final offer, BUT it was the third FULLY RECOMMENDED TENTATIVE AGREEMENT by the union’s bargaining committee!
We are committed to being transparent and sharing the details of our offer. Please connect with your store leader for answers to other questions you may have.
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