News and Updates
November 29, 2016
On Nov. 24, UFCW International President Marc Perrone published an op-ed in The Hill that celebrates the role UFCW members and all union members play during Thanksgiving, and calls on political and business leaders to uphold workers’ rights.
The following are key excerpts from the op-ed:
“After a bitter election season that divided our country, the men and women of the United Food and Commercial Workers union are proud of the role we play during the one holiday that brings America together: Thanksgiving.
“As America’s retail worker union, our members produce and process many of the items you’ll see on your Thanksgiving table, including turkeys, stuffing, bread, desserts, and drinks. They work in grocery stores, preparing dinners for families across the country, and in retail stores, selling holiday sweaters and gifts for everyone on your list. It’s fair to say that our members make the holidays happen, and we are extremely proud of that.
“Through hard work and dedication, our 1.3 million members help millions of Americans celebrate the special moments in their lives. Our members are also able to earn a better life for their families with the help of valuable contracts that honor their hard work and dedication. By being part of a union family and standing together, our members earn better wages, benefits and schedules. Their training and devotion offer real value to employers and the customers they serve. And when they work on holidays, like Thanksgiving, it is not under threat or duress, but with the realization that such sacrifice deserves something extra, like holiday pay.
“Sadly, there are those in the political world and corporate America who may see the right to earn a better life, or to spend time with family even on one of our most sacred holidays, as a threat to their businesses. Truth be told, such thinking is a symptom of what is so fundamentally wrong and unfair in America’s economy.”
November 29, 2016
In the days leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday, several UFCW local unions hosted or participated in local food or turkey drives to help ensure everyone in their communities could enjoy a good holiday meal with their families.
RWDSU/UFCW Local 338 donated and delivered 250 turkeys to various community centers across the New York area, thanks to the generosity of the members. The turkeys were then distributed to food pantries at Suffolk Community College, Our Lady of Grace in Howard Beach, Queens, The INN in Hempstead, and Project Hospitality on Staten Island, all of which ensure that families in their communities have a warm holiday meal. A special video about the turkey drive can be viewed here.
UFCW Local 1776 participated in the 102.9 WMGK Turkey Drop. The local delivered a check for $3,500 and 3,500 pounds of turkey donated by Empire Kosher Poultry. Empire Kosher turkeys are processed by UFCW Local 1776 members in Mifflintown, Pa. Watch footage of their drop off here.
RWDSU members in the New York and New Jersey areas were also among those giving back to help the less fortunate in their communities this holiday season. In addition to food bank efforts throughout the union, RWDSU members prepared meals and provided turkeys to help make the holidays a better time for many families.
In New Jersey, RWDSU/UFCW Local 108 partnered with RWDSU supermarkets Extra Supermarket and Food Bazaar to cook meals to feed thousands of families in Newark and other cities in Essex County. Meals were prepared and served at Clinton Memorial Church in Newark, and the bulk of meals were delivered to area homes, senior buildings, community centers, and public parks. In addition, Local 108, for the 12th year in a row, partnered with the Newark Firehouse Program for Children, and also helped prepare and serve a home-cooked holiday meal for children in Newark.
Big-hearted UFCW Local 342 members also donated food, time and effort to serve Thanksgiving meals to hungry families at Angel Guardian and Mercy Inn. King Kullen grocery in Massapequa and Stop and Shop on Hylan Blvd., Staten Island donated the frozen turkeys.
It is during the holidays that many feel the desire to give back to the community. As a union that represents hard-working families, it is also our responsibility to ensure that our neighbors have a meal to call their own during the holidays. Thank you to all who have given back and made the holidays possible for others.
November 22, 2016
As part of our effort to show members the value they bring to our union family, we have developed a special holiday sticker program. UFCW holiday stickers can be worn by our 1.3 million members throughout the holiday season and lets them show pride in being part of the union that makes the holidays happen. Shipping is not included. If you’re interesting in ordering stickers, contact Erin Ward at (202) 721-8143 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
November 21, 2016
The hard-working men and women of our union family help make Thanksgiving possible for countless families across the country. UFCW members make and sell almost all the necessities for a holiday feast, and often work long holiday hours away from their own families to make the holiday happen for others.
This Thanksgiving, we can give back to our union family by shopping UFCW-made. Below is your complete UFCW-made Thanksgiving shopping list!
Foster Poultry Farms
Farmland Old Fashioned and Oriental Pit
Hormel Honey Roasted
Manischewitz and Stove Top Stuffing
Hanover Foods Frozen and Del Monte Canned Vegetables
Kraft Mac and Cheese
Knouse Foods Apple Butter
Kroger Brand Pumpkin Puree
Food Club Canned Pumpkin
Jim Beam—Black Label, Rye and White
November 15, 2016
UFCW members worked on elections in 22 states, contacted more than 400,000 voters, and helped to ensure some election outcomes across the country that were good for hard-working UFCW members and their families. Here are a few of our Election Day wins:
- We quadrupled the number of women of color in the Senate – electing Kamala Harris of California; Tammy Duckworth of Illinois; and Catherine Cortez-Masto of Nevada.
- We elected the first Indian-American woman to Congress. Pramila Jayapal will represent Washington’s 7th Congressional District.
- We passed ballot measures in Arizona and Washington that will raise the minimum wage and provide every worker with paid sick leave.
- We raised the minimum wage in Colorado and Maine.
- We expanded access to medical marijuana in Florida, Arkansas, Montana and North Dakota, and legalized recreational marijuana in Massachusetts, Nevada, California and Maine.
- We defeated Sheriff Joe Arpaio in Arizona.
- We took control of the New Mexico House of Representatives and flipped both Nevada state legislative chambers.
- And last, but not least, our very own Brigid Kelly was elected to the Ohio State Legislature.
November 14, 2016
On Nov. 11, our union family celebrated Veterans Day by highlighting the people who have served our country and protected our freedom.
Our UFCW family is filled with veteran members who not only served their country at home and abroad, but who also serve in their communities each day. They’re in our grocery stores, pharmacies, and the plants that make and package the food our families eat every day. They work in the retail stores where we shop, and countless other places. Our veteran members are also community volunteers, union stewards, parents, and grandparents.
November 8, 2016
Over the past few weeks, members of the UFCW Women’s Network visited worksite breakrooms across the country to talk to UFCW members about the importance of voting, and to encourage workers to sign pledge cards committing to vote. UFCW Women’s Network members also encouraged workers to get involved in this historic election by talking to their coworkers, precinct walking and phone banking.
November 7, 2016
In the 2016 election cycle, UFCW lost-timers contacted more than 400,000 voters. In the final week, more than 1,000 members of our union family volunteered their time in the field to help get out the vote.
Click through the photos below to see our union family in action.
October 27, 2016
This month, after standing together to improve working conditions, Jim Beam workers in Clermont and Boston, Ky., ratified a new contract by a vote of 204 to 19. The workers are members of UFCW Local 111D.
UFCW Local 111D President Janelle Mudd released the following statement regarding the new two-year contract:
“Today’s vote is the culmination of the efforts of many to reach a compromise that will, ultimately, benefit everyone. After months of negotiation and feeling like the voice of UFCW 111D was not being heard, we had hoped that we would not have to go on strike to reach an agreement with Beam Suntory management. In the end, we made a strong statement and we were heard.
“The final proposal includes many of the key elements that we felt so strongly about, such as equal pay for equal work, a cap on temporary employees and the hiring of more full-time employees. We appreciate management’s diligence to reach an agreement with the union. They met with employees from a cross section of departments from both the Clermont and Boston plants, and representatives talked to employees on the picket line to clarify the areas of greatest need.
“We would also like to thank all the organizations, businesses and individuals who supported us with donations of money, supplies, food and beverages; those who honked, waved and stopped to give words of encouragement; those who picketed with us; and those who refused to cross the picket line.”
October 17, 2016
A rapidly changing, knowledge-based economy is influencing the way U.S. workers are looking at training and job security, according to a new report from the Pew Research Center.
The report, titled The State of American Jobs, shows that occupations requiring skills and education has increased by 68 percent since 1980. American workers are well aware of shifting economic trends, and believe they will need continuous training to keep pace with a rise in jobs requiring social and analytical skills. According to the report, about 63 percent of Americans believe they have less job security than they did decades ago due to several factors, including an increased outsourcing of jobs and imports of foreign products; an increased use of temporary or contract workers; and the decline of union membership.
The report was conducted in association with the Markle Foundation, and was based on a national survey conducted among 5,006 U.S. adults between May 25 and June 29, 2016. A full copy of the report can be found here.