UFCW Official Tries to Kill Jobs

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one newsPeggy Vines, a UFCW vice president in Washington State, is trying to keep a new Winco grocery store from opening. Supposedly, the reason is due to traffic concerns. But, of course, the store is non-union, and this is the third proposed Winco store to be opposed by people connected with the UFCW. Winco is also employee-owned, but that’s not enough for Vines.

one news

Peggy Vines, a UFCW vice president in Washington State, is trying to keep a new Winco grocery store from opening. Supposedly, the reason is due to traffic concerns. But, of course, the store is non-union, and this is the third proposed Winco store to be opposed by people connected with the UFCW. Winco is also […]

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Disrespecting Workers

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norton rose fulbrightWorkers at a Canadian marijuana-growing facility voted against joining the UFCW, but the union asked the provincial government to impose union membership on the workers. The government declined to do so.

Despite MedReleaf’s objections, the OLRB [Ontario Labor Relations Board] ordered that a vote be held. On June 1, 2015, a vote was held and the majority of MedReleaf’s employees voted against unionization. Despite the results of the vote, the UFCW persisted and filed unfair labour practice complaints, arguing for a remedial certification…

The OLRB dismissed all of the UFCW’s arguments…

 

norton rose fulbright

Workers at a Canadian marijuana-growing facility voted against joining the UFCW, but the union asked the provincial government to impose union membership on the workers. The government declined to do so. Despite MedReleaf’s objections, the OLRB [Ontario Labor Relations Board] ordered that a vote be held. On June 1, 2015, a vote was held and […]

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Literal Obstructionists

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epr retail newsThe UFCW blocked access to an IKEA store preventing trucks from making deliveries. Interestingly, “few, if any, of the individuals who attempted to block access to the store were actual IKEA co-workers.”

 

 

 

epr retail news

The UFCW blocked access to an IKEA store preventing trucks from making deliveries. Interestingly, “few, if any, of the individuals who attempted to block access to the store were actual IKEA co-workers.”      

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Disgraceful

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national reviewFor years, the UFCW has run a shameful, illegal, and sometimes weird campaign against Walmart.

Courts and authorities in several states barred the UFCW and OUR Walmart from trespassing on company property. A Maryland judge, for example, declared that activists taking part in the anti-Walmart campaign had to post a $10,000 bond that would be forfeited “for the payment of any damage” if they refused to obey an injunction. Walmart also sued to keep labor activists out of its Florida locations after the UFCW continued to illegally trespass in stores, disrupt customers, and even use crude tactics such as handing “a rotten pumpkin painted in support of OUR Walmart” to a store manager in Orlando.

A Texas appeals court ruled that the labor unions and protesters behind the mass demonstrations at Walmart had to face trespassing allegations. The company filed suit last year after the UFCW and OUR Walmart repeatedly entered stores, ignored no-solicitation signs, blocked access to parking lots, screamed through bullhorns, and staged flash mobs. As a result of protests in Michigan, the National Labor Relations Board ordered the UFCW to stop “restraining and coercing employees” while protesting. According to an NRLB complaint from 2014, two UFCW officials stormed into a Dearborn store’s electronics department with “50 to 80 unknown individuals” and interfered with shoppers while intimidating employees. Eight other protesters, including one man, then barged into the women’s restroom and “coercively interrogated an employee regarding her wages, hours and working conditions.”

In fact, court rulings and findings by the NLRB forced the union to issue a public disclaimer pledging to not enter Walmart property except to shop in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Maryland, and Texas. In other words, courts across the country agreed that the UFCW’s methods as exercised through OUR Walmart were unlawful.

national review

For years, the UFCW has run a shameful, illegal, and sometimes weird campaign against Walmart. Courts and authorities in several states barred the UFCW and OUR Walmart from trespassing on company property. A Maryland judge, for example, declared that activists taking part in the anti-Walmart campaign had to post a $10,000 bond that would be […]

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Stealing from a Student

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nationalrighttoworkThe UFCW has been giving the runaround to a college student and part-time pharmacy employee. The student called the union to find out when he could resign from the union, but the union never responded. He followed up by writing a letter of resignation; the union rejected it because it wasn’t signed. The union finally accepted a second, signed letter, but it refused to stop deducting money from his check, claiming that his resignation was outside of some arbitrary 15-day “window period.” With assistance from the National Right to Work Foundation, the student has filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board.

nationalrighttowork

The UFCW has been giving the runaround to a college student and part-time pharmacy employee. The student called the union to find out when he could resign from the union, but the union never responded. He followed up by writing a letter of resignation; the union rejected it because it wasn’t signed. The union finally […]

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NLRB Approves UFCW’s Micro-Unit Election at Macys

All News | Dirty tactics | Union Mismanagement Comments Off on NLRB Approves UFCW’s Micro-Unit Election at Macys

UFCW-NLRB-Micro-Unit-Macys

National Labor Relations Board upheld United Food and Commercial Workers Union’s Macys Micro-Unit, which may undermine the union

Micro-units have arrived, and the UFCW is one of the first on board, with a small, two-department micro-unit at a Macy’s department store:

Earlier this week, in a 3-1 decision in Macy’s Inc., the NLRB applied its controversial Specialty Healthcare decision in upholding as appropriate a bargaining unit that consists of 41 employees in the cosmetics and fragrances department at a Boston-area Macy’s store, and excludes all other sales employees at the store.

The story goes on to note that these 41 employees constitute only about one-third of the Macy’s approximately 120 employees. Not only that, but the employees are from two different departments, on two different floors of the store. As the NLRB acknowledged, in the two departments, “employees worked in separate departments, reported to different supervisors, worked in separate physical spaces, and there was no significant contact between the employees.”

The UFCW’s support for micro-units may actually blow up in their faces. There are significant risks to the employees in the union, not only from experiencing a degraded level of support, but from competition from other unions:

Micro-units create unnecessary barriers and inherently sow discord between different small groups of workers and lead to different segments of the workforce negotiating against one another. It’s possible that different groups of employees could organize under the auspices of different major unions – some could join the UFCW while others may opt to join the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) for instance. And inordinate amounts of time would be taken up dealing with the different unions’ competing demands.

Not only are micro-units a threat to the experience of employees, but it may actually threaten the position of the union itself. The NLRB’s rush to allow all kinds of smaller sized units to organize may actually undermine the very unions they intend to help. With more fractured representation and more time lost on organizing, employees may not want to stick with this model and reject unions entirely.

The UFCW may think they have the upper hand with the ability to target more employers with micro-unit elections, but they may in fact be setting themselves up for failure. Not only does the micro-unit undermine the union’s position as the best way of representing themselves to the employer, it also means other unions like the SEIU may compete with the UFCW for the same employees.

UFCW-NLRB-Micro-Unit-Macys

National Labor Relations Board upheld United Food and Commercial Workers Union’s Macys Micro-Unit, which may undermine the union Micro-units have arrived, and the UFCW is one of the first on board, with a small, two-department micro-unit at a Macy’s department store: Earlier this week, in a 3-1 decision in Macy’s Inc., the NLRB applied its […]

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Walmart Fights UFCW to Keep Black Friday from Going Dark

All News | Dirty tactics | Union Mismanagement 1 Comment

For months, the UFCW and their subsidiary group, OUR Walmart, have been making noises that they’ll be striking at Walmarts across the country during arguably the biggest retail day of the whole year- Black Friday.

Now Walmart is finally fighting fire with fire, and taking legal action against the UFCW:

Wal-Mart filed an unfair labor practice charge against the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, or UFCW, asking the National Labor Relations Board to halt what the retailer says are unlawful attempts to disrupt its business.

The move comes just a week before what is expected to be the largest organized action against the world’s largest retailer, as a small group of Walmart workers prepare to strike on Black Friday, typically the busiest shopping day of the year.

The response from the NLRB is expected to come sooner rather than later, as Black Friday is imminently approaching, and the impact on Walmart sales could be drastic.

UFCW’s approach here seems to fit the “we hate you, so join us” attitude that we’ve written on extensively here. In this approach, the UFCW is threatening to cut Walmart where it hurts- their bottom line. Rather than negotiating for better wages or making their case in the court of public opinion, they

However, as we’ve seen, this approach does not work well in practice. For all of the previous attempts the UFCW has made to unionize America’s largest employer, Walmart has yet to unionize any of their stores, or even change their attitude towards unionization. But rather than change course, the UFCW has instead decided to double down on attacking the employer.

This is a particularly bad strategy- not only because it only seems to fuel the animosity Walmart has for the UFCW, but because it also hurts the very employees the UFCW claims they are trying to help. Right now, the U.S. economy is not in a particularly good spot, and people are clamoring for whatever jobs they can get.

When a company has a significant loss of revenue, they’re less likely to be able to use that revenue to promote their employees, increase their employee’s benefits, or be able to retain employees especially in a down economy. But by undermining the company’s chief source of revenue, we see a key contradiction between the UFCW’s stated goals of helping employees and their real goals of unionizing more companies at any cost.

One of the origins of the phrase “Black Friday” comes from the accounting practice of using red ink for deficit revenue  and black ink for positive revenue- the Friday after Thanksgiving would the first day some companies would be “into the black,” or finally making a profit for the year. By undermining Walmart, the UFCW is showing their real colors- they don’t mind if the company doesn’t make a profit, as long as they keep getting their dues money from workers to finance their lavish lifestyles.

For months, the UFCW and their subsidiary group, OUR Walmart, have been making noises that they’ll be striking at Walmarts across the country during arguably the biggest retail day of the whole year- Black Friday. Now Walmart is finally fighting fire with fire, and taking legal action against the UFCW: Wal-Mart filed an unfair labor practice […]

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