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Vol. 78/No. 24      June 23, 2014

Grocery workers in LA rally for contract
EAST LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Hundreds of supermarket workers and their supporters rallied May 29 outside the El Super store here. For more than eight months, 575 members of the United Food and Commercial Workers union have worked for El Super without a contract. On May 2 the workers voted down what El Super bosses called their “last, best and final offer.”

“I’ve worked for El Super for eight and a half years, and my wages are $12.62 per hour,” said Flora Castañeda. “Management is paid $40 an hour to stand around and do nothing.”

El Super has 46 stores in California, Arizona and Nevada, seven of which are union, according to Castañeda. “Our contract expired Sept. 27 last year. They’ve offered a $1.30 raise over a five-year contract, 26 cents each year. We rejected that and we’re going back to negotiations next week.”

A union press release said the workers want “living wages, respect on the job, seniority rights, affordable health benefits, paid sick leave, and a guarantee of 40 hours per week for full-time workers.”

UFCW delegations from around the region attended, including from Arizona and San Diego. Other unions participating in the action included Steelworkers, Teamsters, American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees and many others.
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