DENVER (KDVR) — King Soopers/City Market is offering employees wages that would top those of some skilled Colorado workers.
King Soopers is in the midst of contract negotiations with the union representing many of its Colorado workers, UFCW Local 7. The union alleges unfair labor practices and wants its workers statewide to make at least the Denver minimum wage rate of $15.87 in order to keep up with Colorado’s cost of living.
In a letter Tuesday, King Soopers made Local 7 its final offer on pay increases. The starting wage would be increased to $16 per hour, with bonuses for current employees based on employment length.
For checkers, who ring up the items, among other duties, King Soopers is offering an immediate wage increase of $1.50 per hour on top of the $19.51 they already earn. By 2024, a King Soopers checker’s wage would be $22.61 per hour, or $47,000 a year for a full-time checker with five years’ experience.
This would top many of the payscales for some jobs that require professional licensing, vocational training and college education, according to 2020 wage estimates from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. There are more than 300 job categories where the median salary is lower than that figure.
Mental health and substance abuse social workers, who typically require college degrees, earn a median $46,710 per year. Museum technicians and conservators earn $44,470 per year.
Tradesmen of several categories currently earn less. Ironworkers make $45,150 per year, roofers make $43,810 and construction laborers $38,110. Machinists of several stripes earn a median annual wage in the mid-$40,000 range.
King Soopers checkers would also out-earn some first responders. Colorado’s emergency medical technicians and paramedics earned a median of $38,750 in 2020.
Word has not reached FOX31 as to whether the union has accepted or rejected the offer. Local 7 is planning to strike on Jan. 12 if it does not accept the offer.