In an overwhelming rebuke of the company’s bargaining position, UFCW 5 members have voted 99% to reject Rite Aid’s final offer for a new contract.
While Local 5 negotiators remain willing to negotiate in an attempt to reach an agreement, Rite Aid representatives refused to provide future bargaining dates and have threatened to impose a company health care plan by March 1. Rite Aid’s wage proposal is meager in relation to the incredibly high cost of living in the Bay Counties and includes no retroactive pay increase to the expiration of the July 2019 contract.
The current health plan is managed by both Rite Aid and the UFCW through a jointly managed Trust. Management’s proposal puts your health plan in company control with no oversight from the Union. The current plan has a 50-year history of providing excellent health care benefits for active Rite Aid members and retirees. Rite Aid has purposely refused to pay for increased health care costs for the last 11 years while medical costs have skyrocketed. Obviously, this cannot be sustained, and Rite Aid is forcing the plan into insolvency in an effort to gain absolute control.
Stay strong and let management know you are willing back up your rejection vote with a fight for affordable health care and a living wage! In the meantime, Local 5 will demand that Rite Aid negotiators return to the bargaining table. Please access our website at www.ufcw5.org to keep informed.