CHICOPEE, Mass. – Western Massachusetts Unionized Stop and Shop workers voted in favor of a strike authorization against the supermarket chain Sunday morning at the Castle of Knights in Chicopee Sunday.
The United Food & Commercial Workers Local 1459 Union awarded its leaders the power to call and strike, rather than accepting a contract with Stop and Shop. Stop and Shop unionized workers in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut have been working without a contract since February 23rd.
“People came out of the Berkshires because they know how important this is to them,” said Tyrone Housey, President of the United Food & Commercial Workers Local 1459 Union. “I am pleased with the response and the unity that was in the meeting.”
The UFCW Local 1459 Union represents about 1,300 stop and shop employees. The Springfield-based union is demanding better health insurance benefits, pensions, and vacation time.
UFCW Local 1459 President Tyrone Housey duty 22News the strike authorization vote does not mean there will be a strike, but it does give him and Stop & Shop communications manager Stefanie Shuman sends 22News a statement that said Stop & Shop is bargaining in good faith with all of the workers unions And they’re working hard to reach an agreement on a contract. Their contract proposal includes increases to hourly pay, high quality health insurance, and more vacation time.
Shuman said that they have reached an agreement in the bargaining sessions that are scheduled over the next two weeks.