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UFCW Local 247 has asked the Labour Relations Board to intervene after Sobeys refused to disclose information about the company’s redevelopment plans for the 10 Safeway stores Sobeys announced will close in Metro Vancouver

Section 54 of the BC Labour Relations Code requires the employer to meet in good faith with the union to develop an “adjustment plan” for workers affected by the company’s plans to close stores, and to make available to the union relevant information necessary for the adjustment plan.

Sobeys refusal to provide that information triggered the union’s submission to the Labour Relations Board, a submission which also addresses the 5 stores Sobeys claims they may want to reopen as Freshco.

Shortly after Sobeys January 23 announcement of the Safeway closures, UFCW 247 had filed a grievance over the 5 Safeway stores Sobeys claims they may reopen as Freshco stores. That grievance is still active, and the union is considering an expedited arbitration hearing on that grievance.

In addition, the union has been working to ensure we are absolutely clear on the interpretation of the Safeway contract's store closure language that provides security and opportunity for our members. 

Much of the Job Protection language was amended in the 1997 contract negotiations, and we have reached out and spoken to former UFCW Local 2000 President Leif Hansen, who chaired those 1997 negotiations for the Local and wrote much of the language.  

The UFCW 247 Union Negotiating Committee for Safeway will also be meeting to continue strategic planning for the upcoming negotiations with Sobeys in BC. We have been communicating with all the other UFCW Locals in Western Canada who have active negotiations with Sobeys.

Updates and news about Sobeys’ closure of Safeway stores will be posted to the union’s website.

  • ufcw [at] ufcw247 [dot] com