Before the meeting in San Francisco, the United Food and Commercial Worker's Union filed a charge of unfair labor practices against the company with the National Labor Relations Board. After the paperwork was filed, local unions rallied at the federal courthouse in Sacramento in solidarity.
UFCW8 President Jacques Loveall says Raley's needs to include healthcare and pensions in its proposal. "I think we're within striking distance on the economics. The union health and welfare plan and the retiree health and welfare are just absolutely central to getting an agreement done. It's an affront we simply cannot tolerate."
But John Segale with Raley's says the company has not proposed a new health and pension plan because it has no interest in changing the old one. "So, it doesn't deal with health and welfare. It will remain as is under this contract. Our hope is members would have a chance to review it and vote on it and we could get this issue resolved right away."
A federal mediator requested the two sides meet this week.
If no agreement is reached before Saturday night at midnight, Raley's says it will eliminate higher Sunday and holiday pay and freeze all other wages for two years. The company says the cost savings will make it competitive with other chains.
Raley's says thirty percent of its stores lost money last year. The union has demanded to see the company's books.
UPDATE:10:00A.M. 11/02/12 Both sides have agreed to a media blackout regarding ongoing talks. More meetings are scheduled for Friday morning.