KING SOOPERS STRIKE: Merchant and union negotiations go nowhere

DENVER (KDVR) – The King Soopers and United Food and Commercial Workers Local 7 union sat down to work to reach an agreement on better pay and conditions for workers.

A day of negotiations went badly according to the union Lokal 7.

Federal President Kim Cordova released a video update Friday afternoon in which they said the two parties did not get anywhere.

“Joe Kelley [Kings Soopers’ president] appeared as I was surprised but glad he came to the table today. We̵[ads1]7;ve had a little back and forth this morning. It has been very unproductive, the company came in and they have behaved very unprofessionally and have actually screamed almost across the table, said Cordova.

She said things were getting so difficult that King Sooper’s management stormed out of the meeting.

King Soopers responded by giving a statement to KDVR:

This is a misrepresentation of the truth. Joe is actually passionate about speaking on behalf of our staff. The rhetoric and misconceptions do nothing for the benefit of our employees, and they deserve better.

Our position remains the same, we have put all the money on the table and our employees should have the right to choose what is best for them and their families – let them vote.

Jessica Trowbridge, King Soopers and City Market Corporate Affairs

The union issued a statement at 19.30 on Friday which reads:

After days of strikes and repeated calls from King Soopers to listen to the voices of employees and end the company’s unfair work practices, UFCW Local 7 members met with King Soopers’ management today to continue discussions on a new collective bargaining agreement. Unfortunately, after only 68 minutes of discussion across the table spread throughout the day, where King Soopers did not present a single proposal, while the Union presented new offers on twelve (12) different topics that covered the parties’ competing proposals, the discussions ended for the day.

Essential Workers, who have risked their lives through this pandemic to feed the Colorado community, went on strike this week, raising their voices to protest the unfair work practices of King Scoopers / Kroger. Our voices have fallen on deaf ears.

The offer King Soopers has on the table for workers today is even worse than it was in the days before the strike, and ignores virtually all the proposals presented by workers, without new financial gains – and even omits the $ 4000 sales bonuses that King Soopers had previously offered workers to get them to accept a licensing contract.

King Sooper’s latest proposal contains a number of poison pill provisions, one of which will make wage rates proposed by the company worth less than the paper they are printed on. According to this proposal, workers can lose daily overtime pay and are some who look at wages cut at up to $ 3.34 per hour.

King Soopers’ management has been aware of the struggles of its key workers for years. Last night, More Perfect Union released parts of an internal King Soopers presentation that showed the great poverty our members live in, often without a place to sleep or food to eat. So it does not come as a shock that King Soopers once again decided not to do anything.

Our strike against unfair work practices from King Soopers will continue until the company comes to the table in good faith and listens to the voices of the workers. We still hope that the company will really see and hear our members and decide to finally respect us, protect us and pay us what we deserve.

Kim Cordova, President of UFCW Local 7

The two groups decided that they would meet around 11 o’clock on Friday morning to work on a compromise. The groups have been going back and forth all week with the merchant accusing the union of using stable tactics, but the union said they are coming to the table in good faith. Picket lines will remain up while working on a solution. Negotiations will continue on Saturday.

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