Wegmans, Teamsters Reach Tentative Agreement
Following months of tense negotiations, Wegmans Food Markets Inc. and Teamsters Local 118 have come to a tentative agreement that will be submitted to the members of the bargaining unit for ratification. The agreement was reached late last week after two days of meetings.
The parties declined to release details of the agreement.
After a request from New York Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy to resolve their issues, the two sides resumed negotiations on Friday, Oct. 11 to work on the renewal of an expired labor agreement covering 900 warehouse workers, drivers and tradesmen at the grocer’s headquarters in Rochester, N.Y.
The labor dispute included the Teamsters’ rejection of what Wegmans termed its “last, best and final offer” earlier this month, leading to a breakdown in negotiations, as well as a threatened strike, allegations of questionable tactics on both sides, and unfair labor charges filed against the company. At issue was the employees’ pension fund, which Wegmans contended was financially troubled and wanted to replace with its own fully funded retirement plan, while the workers wished to retain their original fund, claiming that the grocer’s move would deny benefits to them and their spouses.
Family-owned Wegmans operates 82 stores in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland and Massachusetts.