Shop Stewards Say Kroger: “End Anti-Worker & Anti-Union Messages to New Marketplace Store Employees”

Via Local 400

On Tuesday May 13, 2014 Richmond/Tidewater Kroger Shop Stewards in Virginia held a seminar to learn more about strengthening the power of our union through new member sign up, engaging members in the upcoming collective bargaining negotiations this summer, and the importance of organizing the new employees at the Kroger Marketplace stores by taking direct action at a Richmond area Kroger Marketplace.

kroger strong“The power of the union is in you all, its members,” said Local 400 President Mark Federici. “The power only arrives when you all stick together and show the number one food retailer in the country that you deserve to share in their successes.”

Despite the afternoon’s steamy temperatures, two bus loads of Kroger shop stewards from both Local 400 and Local 23 in Pittsburgh, Penn., alongside faith leaders, community allies and other supporters headed to Kroger Marketplace store 519 in Henrico, Va. to show solidarity, talk with customers, and deliver a letter to management. The letter demanded an end to the anti-worker and anti-union messages the management is circulating on behalf of Kroger. It brought home the point that joining our union is a decision the employees should be allowed to make together in an influence-free and intimidation-free work environment.

The group of about 150 activists sporting “Solidarity with Virginia Kroger Workers” t-shirts and buttons, marched and chanted, “we are Kroger strong, we are union strong” and “we are the union, the mighty mighty union!” to the beat Local 23′s drum line in front of the store. Check out the photos here!  At the same time, a delegation of Local 400 President Mark Federici, Local 23 President Tony Helfer, Kroger stewards and Richmond area faith leaders went into the store to hand-deliver the letter and talk to employees. To see how management received the letter be sure to visit Local 400′s website here.

UFCW Kroger Members Stand in Solidarity with Va. Kroger Workers for the Right to Have a Union Voice

Kroger 400Kroger workers from UFCW Locals 23 and 400 are wearing buttons in solidarity with their fellow Kroger workers who work in Virginia. The Virginia workers are in Kroger Marketplace stores that recently opened in Henrico and Virginia Beach.

Earlier this month, UFCW Local 400 Kroger members attended the grand opening event of the Kroger Marketplace in Henrico to show support for the workers who are fighting for a union voice on the job. Kroger is attempting to deny workers the benefits of a union contract in both the Henrico and Virginia Beach stores.

“Our message is positive, and having a presence at the grand opening was essential in relaying that message,” said UFCW Local 400 President Mark P. Federici. “Representation by Local 400 is good for working families and the communities they live in. The people working in these stores are indispensable to the success of Kroger. They deserve to have a free and fair choice for representation, and Kroger is denying them that right.”

Be sure to check out the solidarity photos from Kroger union members in Pa., W. Va., Ohio, Va., and beyond on Facebook on both Local 400 ( and Local 23 pages ( and follow the hashtag #KrogerStrong.

UFCW Local 75 Retiree Celebrates 60 Years of Union Membership

Adapted from Local 75

Retiree-2Jack Leyendecker retired from Kroger 420 in 2013 after 60 years as a Kroger employee and UFCW member.  Jack is among the members with the most years of service with UFCW Local 75 (and former Local 1099); he is proud of his long history with the Kroger Company and his union membership throughout his career.

Leyendecker was first hired by Kroger as a Meat Cutter in 1952 at the Walnut Hills store in Cincinnati. He transferred to the Maysville store and became Head Meat Cutter in 1968. After retiring for the first time in 2000, Jack returned to work at Kroger in 2001, and retired again last year.

Jack married his wife, Bergard, in 1965. His son, Jack Jr., works as an Assistant Produce Manager at Kroger 420 in Maysville. Since retiring, Jack enjoys hunting and fishing.

Thank you for all you do Jack, your many years of service are quite the accomplishment and greatly appreciated!