Contract talks between the United Food & Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) and Vons, Pavilions, Albertsons and Ralphs remain at a standstill, affecting some 70,000 employees at nearly 900 markets in Southern and Central California. The two sides are at odds over health and pension benefits as well as cuts to Sunday premium pay and a proposed two-tier wage system, in which new hires would be paid considerably less than long-term employees. As it stands now, a supermarket cashier earns from $9.78 to $18.90 an hour, and a bagger starts his career at $7.55 an hour. Just for comparison’s sake, here is a list of wages paid by non-picketed grocery stores.
Part-time crew members, who work as baggers, cashiers, box boys and stock persons, can start at wages as low as $6.75 an hour with no experience, but generally earn from $7.50 to $15.85 an hour.