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Local Business and Labor Issues

Union Votes to Authorize Possible Southern California Strike Against Grocery Companies

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Shereen Meraji/KPCC
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  LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Officials with Local 770 of the United Food and Commercial Workers union announced today that its members have voted to approve a strike authorization stemming from unproductive contract negotiations with grocery companies.
   ``Southern California grocery workers voted in large numbers, and overwhelmingly rejected the unfair terms that have been proposed by Ralphs, Albertsons, and Vons,'' said UFCW Local 770 President John Grant.

  The voting was conducted Monday and Tuesday of this week, Grant said. Exact tallies of the votes were not immediately released.
   The contract between the union and the companies expired in March. The
strike authorization vote means union negotiators have the power to call
for a strike, if deemed necessary.
   Grant said the union plans to meet Thursday with picket captains to
discuss ``various forms of economic protest'' to oppose the failure of
negotiations and to try to ``get these companies back on the right path to
provide a fair contract.'' The job actions could include asking customers to
boycott stores, Grant said.
   Meetings are pending next week involving the Los Angeles County
Federation of Labor to discuss authorizations for the member unions to honor
possible picket lines, Grant said.
   The next bargaining sessions involving the union and the companies are
scheduled for July 10, 11, and 12, Grant said.