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ShopRite workers to receive extra money in hazard pay
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ShopRite workers to receive extra money in hazard pay

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ShopRite in Galloway

The current ShopRite, 401 S. Pitney Road, Galloway Township ShopRite. Dec. 6. Dec. 6, 2019, 2019 Craig Matthews / Staff Photographer

WASHINGTON — Nearly 50,000 ShopRite union grocery workers in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut will receive hazard pay from an agreement between the company and the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union that was announced Wednesday.

The UFCW union represents 1.3 million food and retail workers, according to a statement from the union.

The deal with ShopRite recognizes the risks its workers have faced during the COVID-19 pandemic and provides retroactive hazard pay ahead of the holiday season that covers all hours worked between July 26 and Aug. 22, the union said.

The information released did not specify the amount of money the workers would receive on average, either individually or in total.

There have been at least 109 grocery worker deaths and more than 48,000 grocery workers infected or exposed in the U.S. since the pandemic began, the UFCW said.

Grocery workers have been on the front lines since the pandemic began and continue to put themselves in harm’s way to help families put food on the table this Thanksgiving, UFCW International President Marc Perrone said in a statement.

The new agreement is a victory for ShopRite grocery workers across New Jersey, New York and Connecticut, Perrone said.

“Today, UFCW grocery workers are sending a clear message to supermarket chains across the country that this pandemic is far from over, and every CEO must do the right thing by providing the hazard pay that these brave essential workers have earned and deserve as the threat from COVID-19 continues,” Perrone said.

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Across the region, UFCW represents about 52,000 New Jersey workers, 74,000 New York workers and 13,000 Connecticut workers.

According to the union, the new agreement includes the following:

• Nearly 50,000 union ShopRite grocery employees represented by UFCW and RWDSU will receive retroactive premium pay for this past summer.

• Retroactive premium pay will be provided to each employee in the form of lump sum payments equal to $1 per hour for all hours worked between July 26 and Aug. 22.

• In the case of future COVID-19 outbreaks resulting in government orders closing all businesses, except essential businesses, ShopRite has agreed to meet UFCW and RWDSU local unions to discuss additional hazard pay.

• Additionally, ShopRite has agreed to observe a moment of silence on Workers Memorial Day and Labor Day each year, starting next year, to recognize frontline workers lost to COVID-19 and the collective strength union membership has provided its employees.

UFCW International and UFCW locals have been negotiating with employers across the country this year to recognize how hard grocery workers are working to provide food and supplies to their communities as the pandemic continues, the union said.

In September, UFCW launched a national campaign to restore hazard pay for America’s 3 million grocery workers, the union said.

Just weeks after launching the campaign, UFCW announced a new hazard pay agreement for 56,000 Stop & Shop grocery workers across New England, New York and New Jersey, the union said.

Contact: 609-272-7202

VJackson@pressofac.com

Twitter@ACPressJackson

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