31,000 Stop & Shop workers from over 240 stores in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island walked off the job Thursday April 11. This massive worker protest comes in response to months of negotiations with Stop & Shop in which the company has refused to back down from proposals attempting to cut workers’ health care, take home pay, and retirement benefits.
Stop & Shop is claiming they are offering a wage increase, but $.30 in hourly wages for a part-time worker would not offset the cuts they have included in their proposal such as:
- Elimination of Sunday and holiday pay for part-timers
- Increase in weekly premium costs for employee only coverage by up to 90% over three years
- Doubling of health care out-of-pocket limits for many employees, going from $1,000 for an individual to $2,000, and from $2,500 to $5,000 for a family
Stop & Shop is the number one grocery chain in New England. It is a subsidiary of multinational company Ahold-Delhaize, which reported more than $2 billion in profit last year. This is not a company in financial trouble.
At the same time the company was demanding workers’ pay more for health care and lose Sunday and holiday pay, Ahold authorized $880 million in dividend payments to shareholders from 2017 to 2019. Ahold also recently received $217 million in corporate tax cuts. Amongst other actions, the company unlawfully refuses to provide financial information to verify its claim that their proposed cuts are necessary.
Instead of investing in the workers who made the company successful and who take care of their customers, Stop & Shop is trying to stiff them.
The decision to walk off the job is a tough one. If one person were to try to fight back on cuts like these by themselves, they wouldn’t stand a chance. But the 31,000 workers who made this choice are doing it together as one union family. None of them have to fight for their health care and benefits alone. Together they can fight these cuts and protest the company’s unlawful actions in connection with negotiations—and win. .
UFCW’s five New England locals are unified at the negotiation table and are asking for Stop & Shop to properly value the employees whose hard work and dedication have made their company so successful.
UFCW members who work at Stop & Shop could use your support. If you live in New England, please don’t cross the line. Please stop at other union stores.
Please sign our petition and stand with UFCW Stop & Shop workers for a contract that allows them to deliver excellent customer service while still being able to provide for their families. It’s time for Stop & Shop to reach a fair contract agreement that reflects the true value of its workers.