Union rejects ‘Last, Best and Final Offer’ from King Soopers, strike begins Wednesday

Local News

DENVER (KDVR) — The latest proposal from King Soopers to the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 7 was rejected, according to union president Kim Cordova.

After back-and-forth negotiations between both parties, they have come to an impasse and the UFCW King Soopers employees will begin a strike at 5 a.m. Wednesday.

King Soopers’ proposal, referred to as the “Last, Best and Final Offer” submitted Tuesday morning put an investment of $170 million over the next three years including wage investments plus ratification bonuses for all associates on the table.

Cordova’s response to the company’s offer was:

“The Company’s ‘last, best, and final’ offer, in many ways, is worse than its previous offers. King Soopers, despite providing certain information at approximately 5:30 PM last night, has failed to respond to critical requests and data concerning the wage, health, and safety matters that are central to these negotiations. Clearly, King Soopers/City Market will not voluntarily meet the needs of our workers, despite our repeated pleas for the Company to listen to the voices of our members. We strike because it has become clear this is the only way  to get what is fair, just, and equitable for the grocery workers who have risked their lives every day just by showing up to work during the pandemic.

“We will continue to be relentless in fighting for our members. We are preparing for a strike that will begin in the Denver metropolitan area tomorrow morning at 5 AM.”

King Soopers said the offer they made to the union was unprecedented and the company has exhausted all of its efforts but can’t come to an agreement when the union is not willing to “engage, meet or talk with the company.”

“We have put all the money on the table,” Joe Kelley, president of King Soopers/City Market said. “All
associates will benefit from this offer, with more money in their pocket, industry-leading healthcare
and a pension for when they retire. We respect our associates’ right to choose what’s best for them
and their families and hope the UFCW Local 7 will do the same.”

The previous offer from King Soopers was a package that included wage investments and signing bonuses of more than $148 million over the next three years. The company did increase the package by $22 million but the union said the newest offer contains “unacceptable and insulting proposals.”

The union chapters in Denver and Colorado Springs voted two weeks ago to go forward with a strike as employees were strongly in favor. Cordova stands firm that employees have been dealing with unfair labor practices and the company has prevented them from obtaining a new contract.

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