We are hearing that the UFCW Local 455 may be communicating incorrect information about the status of contract negotiations. It’s also been a while and we wanted to give you an update.
The bottom line is that nothing has changed. We remain at impasse because of healthcare. Local 455 will not make any proposal that includes a company-administered plan and that issue is still preventing new contracts.
Although there have been some discussions outside of Houston bargaining, we have not formally met with Local 455 to bargain since March 9, 2021. Local 455’s president sent Kroger an email yesterday stating, “We need to set bargaining dates in Houston.”
Kroger responded earlier today. We shared with the union that unless they come to the table with a proposal that includes a company-administered healthcare plan we see no reason to bargain because the parties won’t be able to break impasse and reach new agreements.
The union’s refusal to budge on a company-administered plan makes no sense to us. Why would the union prevent you from having new contracts based on who administers your healthcare? What should matter is the actual benefits you receive not what entity administers your plan.
The company-administered plan is still the best option for our associates, and we have not seen any proposal from Local 455 that would convince us otherwise.
More than 8,000 associates are now enrolled in and have been receiving benefits through a company-administered plan in Houston for more than six months. We have heard associates are happy with their company benefits, which are secure, affordable, and provide improved options for better health care outcomes.
That’s a good thing from our perspective, and we don’t see why Local 455 would oppose continuing these excellent benefits for our associates and their families.
If you have questions, please ask your store leader. You can also stay up to date by visiting www.krogerhoustoncba.com.Return To Front Page