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Deadline for Safeway closure stores extended

The deadline for Safeway members working at the five stores recently announced for closure and conversion to FreshCo to select their option of buyout, buy down or bumping has been extended to February 28. Last week, parent company Sobeys announced the closure of Safeway stores in Abbotsford, Aldergrove, downtown Chilliwack, Ladner and Maple Ridge for several months of renovations before reopening as FreshCo.

UFCW 1518 members in those stores were handed termination letters as well as “option” letters, which were originally due February 12. “With such short notice to make a very big decision, it was important that we pushed the employer to extend the date,” said President Kim Novak.

The union has just received the seniority list from Sobeys and will make it available to members who need to review it to make their decision of whether to accept Sobeys buyout offer, transfer into another Safeway store or accept a buydown and remain in a FreshCo under a lesser collective agreement.

“We will be scheduling time for members to review the seniority lists with their union representative and will email those times to members in the five stores shortly,” President Novak explained, adding that copies of the seniority lists will be available at the union office in New Westminster for members to review.

“We continue to gather your questions and concerns, consult with our legal counsel and press Sobeys for more information about the buyout offers and FreshCo conversions,” said President Novak. “As always, we will make new information available to you as we receive it.”

Please call 1.800.661.3708 to make an appointment during business hours to review the seniority list at the union office.

With such short notice to make a very big decision, it was important that we pushed the employer to extend the date.
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