CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Stop & Shop and the United Food and Commercial Workers International issued a joint statement Monday calling on federal and state governments to designate grocery store workers as “extended first responders” or “emergency personnel.”
According to a news release sent to 22News, the grocery chain said this status would help ensure that workers have priority access to testing, emergency childcare, and other protections to keep themselves and their families safe.
“We are urgently requesting our nation’s state and federal leaders temporarily designate these workers as first responders or emergency personnel. This critical status would help ensure our states’ essential grocery workers have priority access to testing, emergency childcare, and other protections to keep themselves and their families safe and healthy. For the sake of workers, their families, and our nation’s food supply, this action will provide grocery workers with the vital protections they deserve.”– Stop & Shop President Gordon Reid and UFCW International President Marc Perrone
Stop and Shop and the UFCW also announced a 10 percent pay increase for union hourly associates will be extended through May 30. Workers have also been given additional paid sick leave and access to KN95 masks and face shields.