From Press staff reports | Posted: Saturday, November 21, 2009 | 0 comments
A strike by cashiers and clerks at Acme supermarkets in southern New Jersey was avoided Saturday, although the supermarket chain and the union representing the workers had still not agreed on a new contract by Friday night, a union spokesman said.
Bob Wolper, speaking on behalf of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1360, said Saturday that talks may continue as soon as Monday.
About 2,400 members of Local 1360 — working at Acme stores in Cumberland, Burlington, Salem, Camden, Gloucester and Mercer counties in New Jersey, and in lower Bucks County, Pa., are threatening to strike before Thanksgiving if a contract cannot be worked out with their employer. The union, based in Berlin Township, Camden County, says health care benefits and salaries are major issues. Workers have gone without a new five-year contract since April.
Acme’s parent company, Minneapolis-based Supervalu Inc., says it wants a “mutually beneficial contract” and to avoid a strike.
Acme workers won't strike, company spokeswoman says; talks impacting 3 Cumberland County Acmes continue
By Joe Green November 21, 2009, 4:23PM BRIDGETON — Union and company representatives have averted a strike by cashiers and clerks working at Acmes throughout much of South Jersey, at least for now.
That was the word Saturday afternoon from Acme Director of Communications and Public Affairs Gail Street.
Negotiations will continue, as will normal business at the chain’s supermarkets, she said.
United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 1360 represents about 2,400 cashiers and clerks working at Acmes in six New Jersey counties. The three Cumberland County stores that would be impacted by a strike are in Upper Deerfield Township (just outside Bridgeton), Millville and Vineland.
Acme’s previous five-year contract with union workers expired in April, and the two sides have been wrangling over the provisions ever since.
Local 1360 President Sam Ferraino has said the union’s concerns were salaries and health-care benefits.
Union members voted recently to cancel an extension of the previous contract, with cancellation effective Friday. On Nov. 10, they also authorized a strike.
Union representatives could not be reached Saturday afternoon at the Local 1360 office in West Berlin.