UFCW votes to ratify new contact, Loblaw strikes averted
All active or pending strikes at Ontario grocery stores cancelled
BRAMPTON, ONT.—Employees of 69 Loblaw-owned stores in Ontario from Ottawa to Windsor have voted to accept a six-year contract offer from Loblaw Companies.
Strikes commenced in nine stores July 2 and further strikes in 60 locations had been scheduled to begin July 11. With the ratification of the new contract, all strikes have been cancelled.
“I want to thank each and everyone of our members who participated in the ratification process for making their collective voices heard,” Local 1000A president Pearl Sawyer, said. “However each individual member voted, their participation is essential to building a better workplace and a stronger union.”
In addition to local UFCW 1000A, which represents approximately 12,000 workers at 60 locations, UFCW 175 and 633 also voted to ratify in voting earlier this week. The approximately 1,600 UFCW 175 and 633 members, who have been on strike eight days, will return to work immediately.
The union said some of the highlights of the agreement include job assurances for full and part-time worker in a volatile retail industry, prescription drug cards for all full and part-time employees who meet eligibility requirements, and protection of the defined benefit pension plan for all members.
Strike preparations had been initiated late last month after members voted to reject a tentative new agreement with the company. Parties had returned to the table to discuss a new agreement at the urging of a Ministry of Labour mediation officer.