Stater Bros., Union Reach Agreement

COLTON, Calif. - Regional independent Stater Bros. Markets and The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), the union representing Southern California grocery workers, last week reached a tentative contract agreement, the first since the contract was negotiated at the conclusion of the 141-day 2003-2004 strike.

The union last week said details of the agreement would not be made public until union members at Stater Bros. have had an opportunity to review the proposals and to vote on whether or not to accept them.

"This collective bargaining agreement stands as evidence that a grocery chain can, in fact, provide good middle class jobs that pay a fair wage, provide for the health and welfare of its workforce, and at the same time, show substantial profit and growth," said Greg Conger, president of UFCW Local 324, Buena Park.

Union leaders said the contract sets a standard for the industry, as it demonstrates that supermarkets can "provide wages and benefits at the levels grocery workers have long enjoyed and remain competitive in the Southern California market."

Stater Bros. could not be reached at presstime. The grocer operates 162 stores, and employs approximately 17,000 associates.
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