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Threat of Strike Looms for Stop & Shop Employees
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Negotiations are expected to continue to try to secure a contract for 40,000 Stop & Shop workers, despite the threat of a strike by some Connecticut employees. WNPR’s Harriet Jones reports.

Local 371 of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union gave notice to the company Wednesday that they may initiate a strike, anytime from 3pm. The move came after the union said the company’s latest pay offer was unacceptable, and that differences remain over pensions and healthcare. Workers at the grocery chain have been without a contract since February 21st while talks continue. Stop & Shop spokeswoman Faith Weiner says the company is prepared for any action the union may take.

"We did receive notice from Local 371 but that’s not all that unusual in labor negotiations, but we are obviously taking it seriously nonetheless. This means that within 24 hours they are free to initiate a job action and if they choose to do so, we are free to use our temporary replacement workers to keep our stores opening and serve our customers."

Four other locals involved in the talks say they haven’t yet given strike notices, but they may consider the move today. The company is expected to make a new contract offer at talks in Providence. The negotiations cover workers in stores through Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

For WNPR, I'm Harriet Jones.