30,000 Stop & Shop employees go on strike

More than 30,000 Stop & Shop workers in New England went on strike Thursday, April 11 at 1 p.m., and this morning the work stoppage continued. 

The union and retailer have been in negotiations since Jan. 14. "Here it is April, and we're still miles apart," said Jeff Bollen, the president of United Food & Commercial Workers Local 1445.

"Given that negotiations with assistance of the federal mediators are continuing, we are disappointed that the UFCW chose to order a work stoppage in an attempt to disrupt service at our stores," Stop & Shop said in a statement.

The company said it has contingency plans in place to minimize disruption.

Stop & Shop said its "good and reasonable offer" includes across-the-board pay increases for all associates; continued “Gold Level” health care benefits for eligible associates; and increased company contributions to the UFCW’s defined benefit pension fund for current full- and vested part-time associates.

"Despite multi-billion-dollar profits, the company is attempting to enforce takebacks that hurt workers and their families," countered the union. 

"In contrast to the company’s proposal, which is better than most recent UFCW contract settlements and responsive to heavy non-union competition, the unions proposed a contract that would increase the company’s costs," the company said. "This would make our company less competitive in the mostly non-union New England food retail marketplace."

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