It looks like the grocery stike has ended, and the evil corporations got most of what they wanted and made some token concessions.

Current members probably wouldn't have to make regular contributions to help pay for their healthcare coverage for at least two years, as the union had feared, the sources said.

The supermarkets agreed to add millions of dollars to the healthcare fund's reserves, they said. But in a victory for the supermarket companies' bid to stem rising healthcare costs, their regular per-employee contributions to the healthcare program would be capped at a set dollar limit, the sources added.

They said current workers would not get raises over the three years of the contract. But employees would get two lump-sum payments, the sources said. ...

The main solution for the stores, it appears, is the two-tier system giving new hires less compensation. The employee turnover rate is relatively high in the grocery business, so those new, lower-paid hires could be in the majority within a few years.

So current employees (probably) get free health care for another two years, and no raises for three years. New hires will get paid less and and will have to (probably) contribute to the costs of their health care.

It looks like a complete loss for the union, in my opinion. The corporations still have to bear with the costs of the strike and the upcoming price war, but the strikers got almost nothing of what they wanted, despite their perseverance.

The union not only accused the chains of overstating the Wal-Mart concern, it claimed the markets were threatening to destroy one of the last U.S. jobs available that could provide middle-class comfort without requiring years of higher education.
Welcome to reality.
Just hours before the grocery strike was settled Thursday, presidential contender Sen. John F. Kerry joined a small throng of striking grocery workers on the picket line at a Vons market in Santa Monica, throwing his support behind their cause and describing them as heroes in their fight for access to affordable healthcare.
... no matter who you have to blackmail into buying it for you.



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