Thursday, March 02, 2006

RWDSU Still Better than UFCW

Macy's Employees, Members of Local 1-S, RWDSU/UFCW Rally for Fair and Decent Contract

Members of RWDSU Local 1-S (Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, UFCW), local and national labor leaders, elected officials and other supporters rallied today for a "fair and decent" contract for all Macy's New York employees. RWDSU Local 1-S currently represents over 3,500 workers in Macy's Herald Square, Bronx, Queens and White Plains stores.

Last week, the retail workers union announced that its members, employed by Macy's Federated Department Stores, voted to authorize a strike should a job action become necessary to obtain what the union calls a fair and decent contract. A strike could occur if a new contract is not agreed upon by the current deadline of March 3rd. No strike date has been set.

Contract negotiations with Macy's started last month, but have moved at a slow pace, and a federal mediator has been called in by both sides. Major conflict issues include Macy's proposals that demand employee concessions in areas such as healthcare, job security, and general wage increases. Under Macy's current healthcare proposal, a majority of employees, mostly women and minorities, will be unable to afford healthcare benefits and will force workers to pay upwards of 60% of their healthcare premiums. Federated is currently one of the top employers in the state that is transferring the cost of healthcare for its employees to New York taxpayers. Macy's is also refusing general wage increases. Last week, Federated announced triple digit profits during the Company's annual earnings report.


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