Winnipeg – March 27, 2018 – UFCW Canada Local 832 members working at Safeway have ratified a new four-year collective agreement with parent company Sobeys. Thanks to an overwhelming strike mandate, the bargaining committee was able to protect the rights and benefits that Safeway employees have fought for over the years. The union was also able to push back against major concessions being sought by the company.
“I couldn’t be prouder of our bargaining committee and our members for giving us such a strong strike mandate, which made this deal possible,” said Jeff Traeger, the President of UFCW Canada Local 832. “This is our first full round of negotiations with Sobeys since they took over ownership of the Safeway brand in Western Canada, and they were pushing hard for major concessions. It wasn’t until the final hours of bargaining that we were able to make serious movement and come up with an agreement that works for both sides.”
It’s been an uphill battle dealing with Sobeys amidst the company’s current financial reality. The new contract protects the membership’s main desire to keep what they have earned over the years, such as no-cost benefits, a dental plan, and seniority rights. This agreement builds upon those protections with wage gains in the third and fourth year of the contract.
“Knowing the realities that the company faces, our bargaining committee got the best contract possible,” says Traeger.
UFCW Canada Local 832 represents roughly 2,200 workers at Safeway stores across Manitoba.