Southern California Grocery Union Seeks Strike Authorization
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The union for Southern California grocery store workers will ask more than 60,000 members to authorize a strike, arguing that supermarket giants are dragging their feet in contract talks.
Members of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 770 will vote next Wednesday.
Their contract with the parent companies of the Ralphs, Vons and Albertsons chains expired six weeks ago.
Albertsons spokesman Fred Muir says Thursday that strike talk is premature because negotiations continue and progress is being made.
Vons spokesman Daymond Rice says a vote is an unnecessary distraction and a waste of time. He says slow progress is being made and talks will resume this month.
Ralphs spokeswoman Kendra Doyel says the best course of action is to continue negotiating and reach an agreement.
A four-month strike and lockout that began in 2003 cost Ralphs and other grocery chains more than $2 billion by some estimates.
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