Feb 26, 2009

Grocery Workers Serving Up Justice in Fight Against Wage Theft

Five hundred and fifty gourmet grocery workers will receive nearly $1.5 million in unpaid wages, thanks to the efforts of United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 1500.

Watch the video here.

In 2008, several workers at Amish Markets and related stores Zeytinia, Zeytinz, and Zeytuna approached UFCW Local 1500 because they wanted to form a union at their stores.


The UFCW soon discovered that many workers were not being paid proper overtime and brought the violations to the attention of the New York State Department of Labor. The DOL conducted a sweep of nine locations and confirmed widespread wage and hour and labor violations.

Bruce W. Both, president of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500 said, "The New York State Department of Labor and the workers from Amish Markets, a gourmet grocery store serving high-end food products, deserve the gratitude of every taxpayer in the city because they had the courage to stand up and say: ‘This is wrong!’"

State Labor Commissioner M. Patricia Smith said of Amish Markets, "This employer was caught red-handed with his hand in the gourmet cooking jar."

Local 1500 and the Building Blocks Project play a leading role in bringing good food, good jobs, and good health to New York’s neighborhoods by promoting and establishing policies that preserve existing supermarkets, develop new supermarkets and ensure the ability of grocery workers to form unions.

4 comments:

Morgan said...

Excellent job, Local 1500! According to news reports, this problem had been going on for more than five years with some workers putting in 60 hours per week with no overtime pay. Another example of why Congress needs to pass the Free Choice Act.

Joseph said...

AWESOME JOB LOCAL 1500.N.Y.
MANY OTHER TYPE OF MARKETS LIKE WHOLE FOODS CHARGE HIGH END PRICES, BUT DENY WORKERS MEMBERSHIP OR REPRESENTATION.

VINOD GOSWAMI said...

WONDERFUL JOB UFCW!!! KUDOS!!
IT SHOW THE GREAT URGENCY TO GET THE EMPLOYEE FREE CHOICE ACT PASSED. THE WALMART AND WHOLE FOOD NEED TO KEPT IN CHECK AND SHOULD BE UNIONISED. THEY ALWAYS IGNORE AND DENY WORKERS' RIGHTS.VINOD GOSWAMI LOCAL 21

Kristin. said...

Another reason why we need more unions in the this country. Fight the propaganda, unions create fair wages and fight corporate America. Way to go Local 1500!!! Worker's rights are America's rights!