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Retail

Strike At Kroger's King Soopers Ends After Deal With Union

More than 8,000 workers at nearly 80 Kroger Co-owned King Soopers stores called off their strike after reaching a tentative deal with the US retail giant, the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 7 union said.

The details of the contract would be made public in the coming days to the union members after a voting by workers beginning Monday, the union said in a statement. Kroger did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The workers went on a strike on 12 January after several failed negotiations. The union had rejected a $170 million offer made last week by Kroger, which termed it as the "last, best and final offer".

Proposed Wage Increases

The offer proposed wage increases of up to $4.50 per hour depending on job classification and tenure, with the starting rate of pay increased to $16 per hour. The union, however, sought raises of at least $6 per hour for everyone.

Rising COVID-19 infections and inflation have pushed US workers to demand better working conditions and higher pay, with employees at Deere & Co and Kellogg Co's cereal plants recently securing better deals after weeks of strike.

In December, Kroger Co announced plans to will stop some COVID-19 benefits for unvaccinated employees starting 2022, in a bid to push more workers to get inoculated amid growing concerns over the spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant.

The company said it would no longer provide paid COVID-19 leave for unvaccinated employees and will apply a $50 monthly health insurance surcharge to salaried non-union workers who are unvaccinated and enrolled in a company healthcare plan.

News by Reuters, edited by ESM. For more Retail news, click here. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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