By Amie Stager
Source: Workday Magazine

The past year and a half, let alone the past four years, have been busy for grocery store workers in Minnesota, especially union members who have been in contract negotiations. Thousands of metro-area UFCW Local 663 members at UNFI Cub Foods, Lunds & Byerlys, Kowalski’s Markets, and Seward Community Co-op voted to authorize unfair labor practice (ULP) strikes, and reached tentative agreements (TA) that members voted to approve. Workers took actions, from voting to authorize strikes and marching on the boss to flyering outside stores. In many cases, in the eleventh hour before going on strike, employers gave into workers’ demands.

A monumental labor struggle has taken place in the Brainerd Lakes Area, a two-hour drive north from the Twin Cities where almost 100,000 Minnesotans live and work. Workers at two Cub Foods, two Super Ones, and a SuperValu voted 88% in favor of accepting a contract on May 2. They had been negotiating since November and conducted a four-day ULP strike over the Christmas holiday from December 22 to 25. After that strike, members rejected another contract offer in January.

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