(February 4, 2019) – Over the last week, 12 more employees returned to work for Saskatoon Co-op after picketing for the last three months. This brings the total number of UFCW members who have continued working, or have returned to work at Saskatoon Co-op, to more than 200.
“We’ve been welcoming team members back to work since the strike started, but we’re reaching a critical mass that’s allowing us to bring back the level of service that our members and customers expect,” said Grant Wicks, CEO of Saskatoon Co-op.
The 203 employees who are UFCW members, as well as out-of-scope and temporary employees from the Saskatoon area, have helped Saskatoon Co-op expand hours at its gas bar locations and re-open its Stonebridge food store. There are plans to soon bring back full-service to many gas bar locations, open a new liquor on 8th street and re-open the two remaining closed locations.
As the strike enters its fourth month, Saskatoon Co-op continues to seek an agreement that will work for employees and allow the business to stay viable in the long-term. The last offer from Saskatoon Co-op provided wage increases for current employees and maintains industry-competitive benefits for both current and new employees.
“Contrary to what’s been shared by the Union, our management bargaining committee wants to negotiate, as long as those discussions are genuine and are moving us forward,” said Wicks. “The Union going back on what we’ve already agreed on isn’t going to get us to a deal, but having productive talks will help lead us to an agreement.”
“While we try to get back to genuine discussions with the Union, we’ll keep bringing back services and locations for our members and customers,” said Wicks. “We’ve seen a steady flow of customers coming back, and we’ll be offering full service and other incentives for customers in the coming weeks.”
Store hours, openings and bargaining updates are shared on www.saskatoonco-op.crs.
About Saskatoon Co-op
Saskatoon Co-op is a retail co-operative that has proudly served Saskatoon and area for more than 80 years. Today, Saskatoon Co-op serves more than 118,000 members and many more customers. Retail facilities are located in Saskatoon, Warman, Martensville, Colonsay, Watrous, Hepburn, Dalmeny, Rosthern and Waldheim, for a total of 36 locations. For the five year period starting in 2013, Saskatoon Co-op allocated more than $53 million to its members in equity and paid over $30 million in cash back. The Co-op paid over $218 million in employee costs, while contributing over $2.5 million to community organizations and initiatives.
For more information contact: (306) 933-0341; Coopinquiries@sasktel.net