Upon ratification of the agreement, employees who have been with the company for one consecutive year will receive bonus gift cards from King Soopers ranging from $150 to $1,000 depending position, status and length of service.
Once the contract is ratified, employees at the top of their pay scale (Journeyman or above), will receive a wage increase of 30 cents per hour in the first year of the contract with subsequent 25-cent an hour per year increases for the remainder of the 52-month contract. More than 65% of King Soopers' associates currently earn the top rate or above. Employees working toward top rates will receive between 4 and 5 increases during the contract.
Increases in healthcare benefits include coverage after one year of service for part-time associates' entire families for $60 per month. The plan, which does not increase employee contributions from the current contract, also adds a significant number of preventative services to the coverage.
"We encourage our associates to let their voices be heard and vote to ratify this contract by returning their ballots. King Soopers has offered bonuses, raises, increased healthcare benefits and nearly $40 million to help stabilize the pension fund in an economy where other companies are withholding raises, slashing healthcare benefits and freezing pensions," said Russ Dispense, President of King Soopers. "We have a great team that works hard to serve our customers every day, in every store and we appreciate their efforts throughout this process."
About King Soopers: King Soopers, Colorado's own full-service retail grocery chain, opened the doors of its first store in June of 1947 as the embodiment of the dream of its founder, Lloyd King. Today the company employs over 19,000 people and has 141 stores. The company is committed to being a good corporate citizen with a special focus on four major categories: feeding the hungry, helping children, supporting women's health issues, participating in important civic/community events. King Soopers' mission is to be a leader in the distribution and merchandising of food, health, personal care, and related consumable products and services. By achieving this objective, the company satisfies its responsibilities to shareowners, associates, customers, suppliers, and the communities we serve.
Safeway Presents UFCW Local 7 "Last, Best and Final Offer" Safeway presented UFCW Local 7 with a Last, Best and Final Offer (LBFO) on Monday November 16 in an effort to reach new contracts for the company's Colorado employees represented by Local 7. Safeway had some eighteen (18) bargaining sessions with Local 7 since April 2009.
"A number of very difficult issues have been addressed during those sessions, but despite the company's efforts to address our differences with Local 7, we have remained apart on pensions as well as other core economic and operational issues," said Kris Staaf, Safeway Director of Public Affairs.
"This LBFO is Safeway's best effort to reach new contracts with Local 7 and we haven't held anything back," said Staaf.
The LBFO includes a very attractive ratification bonus for all employees who have been employed for a year or more by the date of the ratification, a 52-month contract term, wage increases, shortened dependent wait time for health benefits coverage and access to a new first class health and care management program. The LBFO also contains pension improvements over the company's previous offer including partially restored pension accruals.
"We believe we have provided our employees with a significantly improved offer that allows us to effectively compete, and helps protect our business and the jobs of our employees that are threatened by the growing presence of non-union, low cost operators in Colorado," said Staaf
The extended contracts expired on September 12, 2009 and covered approximately 7,000 Safeway employees.