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September 1, 2015

President Perrone Statement on Extreme Poverty Increasing in America

 WASHINGTON, D.C. — Marc Perrone, International President of the largest private sector union in the nation, the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), released the following statement in response to news that the number of people struggling to survive on just $2 per day has more than doubled since 1996, placing 1.5 million American households into extreme poverty.

 “The idea that there are 1.5 million families in America, the wealthiest nation on Earth, living on just $2 per day is beyond shocking and should be a wakeup call to all our political leaders – especially those running for President – that real change is needed now.

“This dire situation has only been worsened by irresponsible corporations like Walmart who rely on scheduling techniques that too often provide workers with unpredictable schedules and pay. These erratic scheduling practices make it clear that Walmart and many other bad employers are ok with making work hurt rather than pay.

“It is time for elected leaders, of both parties, to understand that a living wage, reliable work schedules, and the ability of all workers to organize and negotiate better lives, are keys to reducing poverty and strengthening our nation’s economic future.

“We can’t continue down a path where the jobs that are created only serve to perpetuate low wages, poverty and despair. We must do better, and our union family is committed to fighting these economic injustices in every way possible.”

July 24, 2015

UFCW Statement on A&P Bankruptcy Developments

A&PFor Immediate Release: July 24, 2015

Contact: press@ufcw.org

Montvale, N.J. – The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) International Union International President Marc Perrone, released the following statement on behalf of UFCW Locals 27, 100R, 152, 342, 371, 400, 464-A, 1245, 1262, 1360, 1500, 1776 and RWDSU Locals 338 and 1034, after meeting with A&P executives to discuss the future of A&P and its proposed sale.

“For years, the hard-working men and women of A&P not only did their jobs, they personally and financially sacrificed to invest in A&P’s success. These sacrifices were made for the sake of their families, their co-workers, and the customers and communities that they deeply care about. Now, at this critical time, after repeated mismanagement and strategic mistakes made by company executives, A&P is asking for even more. Enough is enough!

“Instead of asking for more sacrifices to pay-off a select group of executives and corporate investors, A&P should be focusing on their workers and their families during this challenging time.

“We want to be very clear, our members and their families sacrificed. They invested financially and personally in the success of these stores and they remain committed to working hard to make these stores a success for any responsible buyers. But make no mistake, we will not take part in any effort that asks them to give up what they have earned and deserve.

“Looking ahead, we will work cooperatively and constructively with anyone, but we will fight back with everything we have if A&P or its financial backers attempt to further exploit our members. For A&P to ask our members to give up their rights and benefits is simply unacceptable. Moreover, it is an insult given that it is our hard-working members who have and will make these stores a success. In fact, what will make these stores a true financial success is new and responsible management, not more sacrifices by A&P’s hard-working men and women.

“If A&P, its executive team, or its investors want to play the blame game, they should all look in the mirror.

“Now is the time for A&P to do what is right and we fully expect that they will honor their responsibilities to its employees, our members, and their families.”

June 26, 2015

UFCW Statement on Obergefell v. Hodges

Supreme Court Rainbow Pillar_FINALWASHINGTON, D.C. — Marc Perrone, International President of the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), today released the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges.

“Today, marriage equality is finally the law of the land. This decision secures equality and dignity for every family in all fifty states. Our UFCW family strongly supports full equality for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people – not just the right of all people to marry the person they love, but also equal rights when it comes to employment and immigration policies. It is a historic victory that was simply unimaginable just two decades ago.

While we are celebrating today, it’s worth remembering that there is still a lot of work to be done before LGBT people have full equality under the law. In a majority of states, there is nothing to prevent a worker from being discriminated against or fired simply because of who they love, or because of their gender identity or expression. And LGBT workers’ partners and families can be unfairly excluded from workplace policies and benefits like health coverage or family leave.

A UFCW union contract is often the only protection LGBT workers and their families have from these indignities. The UFCW is proud to play a part in the growing momentum towards equality – from bargaining union contracts that recognize LGBT workers and their families, to fighting for change at the state level, to marching in solidarity at pride parades and celebrations in towns across America.”

June 23, 2015

UFCW President Perrone: “Passage of Fast Track is a Historic Bipartisan Failure the American People Will Never Forget.”

We will make sure that our 1.3 million members and their families know exactly
who stood up for hard-working families and who did not.”

via Daily dot

via Daily dot

Washington, D.C. — Today, Marc Perrone, International President of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), the largest private sector union in the nation, released the following statement in response to the U.S. Senate invoking cloture on and moving towards passage of Trade Promotion Authority, also known as Fast Track.

“The passage of fast track is a historic bipartisan failure the American people will never forget. Instead of passing laws that will help create jobs and raise incomes, the President, along with many Republicans and Democrats, have proved that they have no regard for the concerns of hard-working men and women who will now lose their jobs or struggle to earn a good income.

“The President, and those members of Congress who voted for this legislation, must now live with the consequences of their actions. While they may choose to diminish our concerns, the passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will feed a spiral of despair of lower wages, lost jobs, and increased income inequality. History has proved this right, and sadly, it will prove it once again.

“The brutal truth is that the President and the Members of Congress who voted for Fast Track will not be the ones who pay the economic price of another bad trade deal; they will be fine. It is the countless number of workers who will wake up in the years ahead and realize the good job they had is gone, and the only choice they have now is to work at Walmart or McDonalds where they will barely make enough to survive.

“So, let me be very clear, we, and the American people will hold those Members of Congress, especially congressional leaders, who voted for Fast Track, and who may vote for TPP, accountable.  We will not forget this vote. We will expose, when the details are finally made public, the terrible impact that TPP will have on this nation. Above all, we will make sure that our 1.3 million members and their families know exactly who stood up for hard-working families and who did not.”

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Join the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) online at www.ufcw.org

We are 1.3 million families standing together to build an economy that every hard-working family deserves.

 www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational    @UFCW

June 18, 2015

President Perrone: Today’s Fast Track Vote Displays Desperation

via-stopfasttrack.com_

Washington, D.C. — Today, Marc Perrone, International President of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), the largest private sector union in the nation, released the following statement in response to the U.S. House passing stand-alone fast track trade legislation.

“Today’s vote in the U.S. House displays the desperate levels that supporters of this terrible trade deal will stoop to, and a complete disregard for America’s workers and their families.

“Instead of addressing the massive failures of past trade agreements, the House and the President have doubled down on a disastrous strategy that will cost jobs, lower wages and worsen already record levels of income inequality.

“Make no mistake, every member of the House, both Republicans and Democrats, who sent Fast Track to the Senate today will be remembered for turning their backs on America’s working families when it mattered most.

“Going forward, we will shift our focus to the Senate where multiple Senators have already expressed doubt about this latest and most frantic attempt to pass Fast Track. We will make clear to every Senator that the best place to stand is against Fast Track and with the hard-working men and women of America.”

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Join the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) online at www.ufcw.org

We are 1.3 million families standing together to build an economy that every hard-working family deserves.

www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational    @UFCW

June 18, 2015

President Perrone: Today’s Fast Track Vote Displays Desperation

image via stopfasttrack.com

image via stopfasttrack.com

Washington, D.C. — Today, Marc Perrone, International President of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), the largest private sector union in the nation, released the following statement in response to the U.S. House passing stand-alone fast track trade legislation.

“Today’s vote in the U.S. House displays the desperate levels that supporters of this terrible trade deal will stoop to, and a complete disregard for America’s workers and their families.

“Instead of addressing the massive failures of past trade agreements, the House and the President have doubled down on a disastrous strategy that will cost jobs, lower wages and worsen already record levels of income inequality.

“Make no mistake, every member of the House, both Republicans and Democrats, who sent Fast Track to the Senate today will be remembered for turning their backs on America’s working families when it mattered most.

“Going forward, we will shift our focus to the Senate where multiple Senators have already expressed doubt about this latest and most frantic attempt to pass Fast Track. We will make clear to every Senator that the best place to stand is against Fast Track and with the hard-working men and women of America.”

 

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Join the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) online at www.ufcw.org

We are 1.3 million families standing together to build an economy that every hard-working family deserves.

 www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational    @UFCW

 

June 12, 2015

President Perrone: “The Best Way to Help the Jobless is to Stop Passing Trade Agreements like TPP that Kill Jobs.”

Fast-Track-Stopped-AMP-12June2015

Washington, D.C. — Today, Marc Perrone, International President of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), the largest private sector union in the nation, released the following statement in response to the U.S. House failing to advance fast track trade legislation.

“This is a victory for hard-working men and women all across America. In the face of long odds, the American people sent a powerful message that their interests trump narrow political agendas and special interests.

“Today, we saw elected leaders stand up and make clear that the failed promises of global trade agreements, which only seem to serve irresponsible corporations, must come to an end. More importantly, we have seen what hard-working families can accomplish when we stand together and fight for what is right for both workers and this nation.

“With respect to TAA, we support a clean extension of the program, but the best way to help the jobless is to simply stop passing trade agreements like TPP that kill jobs.

“While one vote does not end the fight, our campaign for a better America will continue full speed ahead until the threat of TPP and other unfair trade deals is gone for good.”

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Join the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) online at www.ufcw.org

We are 1.3 million families standing together to build an economy that every hard-working family deserves.

www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational    @UFCW

June 9, 2015

New TPP Ad Released Urging a “No” Vote on Fast Track

Letter Sent to All Members of the House of Representatives Asking: “Will you do what is right for America’s hard-working men and women who you are sworn to serve?”

TPP secretWASHINGTON, D.C.—Highlighting the secrecy of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the reluctance of the Obama administration to release details, the UFCW today released a new ad urging members of the House of Representatives to vote no on fast track.

As part of its intense lobbying campaign, a letter was also sent to all 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives where UFCW International President Marc Perrone made clear what is at stake. “Will you stand with the irresponsible corporations and special interests that are pushing fast track and the TPP?” he wrote. “Or will you do what is right for America’s hard-working men and women who you are sworn to serve?”

“America’s workers and hard-working families and their advocates have been completely shut out of the process,” Perrone added.

In the letter, Perrone decried President Obama’s strong-arm tactics on the trade deal and urged members of Congress to remember their obligation to their constituents.

“President Obama has regrettably made the vote about loyalty to him,” he wrote. “At the UFCW, our loyalty is to the 1.3 million hard-working men and women we represent and their families. Your loyalty should be to this country, to your constituents, and not President Obama, one party, or a secret trade deal.”

“The secrecy has gotten so egregious that when a group of concerned citizens went to the U.S. Trade Representative’s (USTR) office last week, not only were they prevented from reviewing the agreement, USTR staff locked the door to the visitor’s entrance,” the letter reads. “It leaves you to wonder: what are they hiding?”

“Our elected leaders must acknowledge what the President refuses to—that unfair trade deals have been catastrophic for hard-working families, driving down wages and benefits, shipping jobs overseas, and exploding income inequality,” Perrone concluded.

This week the UFCW will engage in a major blitz, reaching out directly to undecided members of Congress who will determine the outcome of fast track. This includes the ads in Politico, which highlight a bipartisan concern over the issue of secrecy and the right of the American people to know what is in this deal. A print ad ran today and digital ads are scheduled to run throughout the week.

The full letter is linked here and copied below.

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Join the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) online at www.ufcw.org

We are 1.3 million families standing together to build an economy that every hard-working family deserves.

 www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational    @UFCW

Dear Representative:

On behalf of the 1.3 million hard-working members of the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), I am writing to strongly urge you, again, to oppose fast track legislation if and when it comes up for a vote.

Respectfully, you have a critical decision to make. Will you stand with the irresponsible corporations and special interests that are pushing fast track and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)? Or will you do what is right for America’s hard-working men and women who you are sworn to serve?

As you know, the TPP has been put together entirely in secret, with the advice and counsel of those who for decades have benefitted from bad trade deals. America’s workers and hard-working families and their advocates have been completely shut out of the process. The secrecy has gotten so egregious that when a group of concerned citizens went to the U.S. Trade Representative’s (USTR) office last week, not only were they prevented from reviewing the agreement, USTR staff locked the door to the visitor’s entrance. It leaves you to wonder: what are they hiding?

The American people deserve to know what is in this deal. And those considering supporting it should ask themselves how they will justify voting for a secret deal that would harm their constituents and the American people.

As we now see, President Obama has regrettably made the vote about loyalty to him. At the UFCW, our loyalty is to the 1.3 million hard-working men and women we represent and their families. Your loyalty should be to this country, to your constituents, and not President Obama, one party, or a secret trade deal. So while the President pulls out all the stops to sway undecided Members of Congress, he and you should remember the people who elected you to office.

If there is any doubt where the American people stand, you need to look no further than a recent New York Times/CBS News poll where over 55 percent of Americans oppose fast track, including 61 percent of independents.

Finally, this is more than just a vote about a trade deal so bad that it is kept in secret. This is about whether you will stand with the very workers who have paid the price from other bad trade deals. Some may choose to ignore this reality, but our elected leaders must acknowledge what the President refuses to—that unfair trade deals have been catastrophic for hard-working families, driving down wages and benefits, shipping jobs overseas, and exploding income inequality.

Enough is enough.

We urge you to do the right thing and vote no on fast track.

Sincerely,

Marc Perrone
International President

 

June 4, 2015

UFCW Members in Missouri Will Not Rest Until Right to Work is Defeated Once and for All

MO-RTW-366x324Missouri Dave Cook, President of United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 655, Steven Straher, President of UFCW Local 88, and Tom Price, President of UFCW Local 2, representing 20,000 workers across Missouri, today released the following statement in response to Governor Jay Nixon’s veto of right to work legislation.

“On behalf of the 20,000 members of the UFCW in Missouri, we thank Governor Nixon for vetoing a bill designed to silence the voice of workers. Right to work would lower wages and standards across our state and we will continue to fight it tooth and nail until the veto is sustained in September.

“Right to work sounds good on paper, but in reality it means lower paying jobs, fewer benefits, and more dangerous workplaces. It is being pushed by out of state special interests who believe workers do not deserve a say in the terms of their employment. Plain and simple, it’s a corporate giveaway at the expense of everyday Missouri families.

“We’ve been fighting this legislation for 5 years so you better believe we are ready for another three months. Right to work proponents may not have the votes to override now, but the millionaires and billionaires pushing this bill will spend the summer trying to change that. In the meantime, the UFCW will be working with our Republican and Democratic partners in the Legislature to sustain the veto. UFCW members will be reaching out directly to their friends and neighbors to let them know that Missouri cannot afford a future with right to work.

“Simply put, right to work would be a disaster for the hard-working families of our state and the UFCW will not rest until it is defeated once and for all.”

 

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Join the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) online at www.ufcw.org

We are 1.3 million families standing together to build an economy that every hard-working family deserves.

 www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational    @UFCW

June 2, 2015

IKEA USA Charged with Violating Federal Labor Law

Labor Board Complaint Alleges IKEA Manager Interrogated Workers, Violated Freedom of Association

Participants in today's Day of Global Solidarity with IKEA workers show their support in Dublin, Ireland.

BOSTON — The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has issued a complaint against IKEA USA alleging unfair labor practices at the company’s store in Stoughton, Mass. The complaint alleges that the company violated federal law by unlawfully interrogating employees about their support for a union. The complaint further finds fault with the company’s social media policy, finding the policy to be overly broad and infringing on the right of workers to engage in protected activity.

“My coworkers and I came together to make IKEA better because we love our jobs and we believed in the company’s values,” said Nancy Goetz, a worker in the Stoughton IKEA. “In other countries, IKEA works collaboratively with the workers’ unions to solve problems. I never thought that IKEA would allow supervisors to intimidate and interrogate us. I expected more from IKEA. I expected that my rights would be respected.”

IKEA Group is a signatory to the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), an international compact that prohibits companies from interfering with workers’ freedom of association. IKEA has incorporated Conventions 87 and 98 of the International Labor Organization, an agency of the United Nations, into the company’s internal code of conduct. Conventions 87 and 98 relate to freedom of association and the right of collective bargaining.

Freedom of association for American workers is protected by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), a law that protects workers’ rights to take collective action, form unions and bargain collectively. The Act also prohibits employers from engaging in certain coercive or intimidating tactics for the purpose of preventing workers from freely exercising their rights under the Act. Prohibited tactics are considered Unfair Labor Practices and are prosecuted by the NLRB.

“This complaint sadly shows that IKEA does not treat hard-working American families with the same respect that the company shows to workers in other parts of the world,” said Marc Perrone, International President of the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW). “Every American worker has a fundamental right to come together and take collective action to improve their jobs. The UFCW stands with these workers, and together we will hold IKEA to a higher standard.”

The full complaint filed by the NLRB can be obtained by contacting Moira Bulloch at mbulloch@ufcw.org.

 

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Join the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) online at www.ufcw.org

We are 1.3 million families standing together to build an economy that every hard-working family deserves.

www.facebook.com/UFCWinternational   @UFCW