Late last night, UFCW 1518’s bargaining committee reached a tentative agreement with Sobeys for a new contract for their members working at Safeway. This is great news for our fellow union members, and it has come after several days and nights of intense negotiations. We congratulate UFCW 1518 members on what was certainly difficult work! UFCW Local 247 members might be wondering what this means for our Meat, Deli, and Seafood negotiations, and that’s what this update is all about.
UFCW 1518 Tentative Agreement
While excellent news and a positive sign for us, the UFCW 1518 tentative agreement is just that – tentative. There is a process that now needs to happen for that agreement to be accepted by their membership and for it to come into effect.
We understand that their bargaining committee is strongly recommending that the membership vote to accept the tentative agreement. We also understand the agreement involves 75 pages of agreed items, which will require a lot of work to gather and present. Rolling that out to members and voting on it will still take some time.
UFCW 247 Bargaining Still To Come
An unmistakable characteristic of this round of bargaining has been how closely we’ve worked with UFCW 1518. Our strike votes and bargaining meetings have been coordinated so as to demonstrate union solidarity across the stores. As UFCW 1518 expressed to their members in an update this morning, their solidarity and support for UFCW 247 will continue.
Our meetings with the company after Thanksgiving (October 11-14) are still happening. Our bargaining committee’s work is still ahead.
Without a doubt, we share many issues with UFCW 1518 members, but we still have issues that are unique to our departments and that we need to address when we meet with Sobeys. Just last week, our members gave us the strongest kind of leverage we could ask for – a 99% strike authorization vote with a massive turnout. With that in hand, we will continue to push for a tentative agreement of our own, one that we can strongly recommend to UFCW Local 247 members.
We must continue to prepare for any possible outcome, whether that’s a tentative agreement (if talks go well) or a strike action (if they don’t). Let’s continue the momentum we’ve been building.
We are still preparing Picket Captain training if there is a strike. If you are interested in stepping up and taking on the role of Picket Captain, please let us know by emailing email@example.com. Any effort we make to prepare for a strike – whether it happens or not – will help us build a stronger union.