FMCS Director Allison Beck issued the following statement today on the announcement of a tentative agreement between southern California grocery workers and the Ralphs and Albertsons supermarket chains, affecting approximately 50,000 employees:
“This tentative agreement represents the cumulative effort of many people and is the product of very hard work by the negotiators from both sides. I want to commend the negotiating teams for both the UFCW and the employers for their patience, their perseverance, and their commitment to the process of collective bargaining in working out their differences. It is a tribute to their efforts, to collective bargaining, and to the process of mediation that this positive outcome has been achieved and a possible work stoppage affecting thousands of families has been avoided.
“With this positive result, I also want to commend the work of FMCS Deputy Director Scot Beckenbaugh and Commissioner Isael Hermosillo, who assisted the negotiators for the UFCW and the supermarkets in resolving their differences. These were long and difficult bargaining sessions, and through the efforts of our FMCS mediators, the parties stayed at the table and made difficult choices that resulted in today’s agreement.
“I thank the parties for their cooperation with FMCS mediators, and we are pleased at this successful result.”
In accordance with FMCS practices and consistent with the requirements of mediator confidentiality, FMCS will have no further comment on the details of the agreement or the substance of the negotiations.