By Paul Crandall, Secretary-Treasurer
These are certainly challenging times for everyone. I never thought six months ago that we would be having negotiations and grievances via Zoom calls. We all have had to adapt to the rapid changes that the pandemic has brought to the way we handle our work, and everything else in our lives, our family, children, education, worship, and social interaction. The workplace has changed with mandatory masks and cleaning and social distancing and for those members in the Retail Grocery Business the last six months has been extremely busy. Union Representatives have been very busy visiting their worksites and with all the hiring they have been attending New Hire Orientations every day.
This is a very critical time for all Union Stewards In all our Union work places to step up and assist helping build a strong sense of unity and solidarity among our Union family. As Stewards, you can:
- Welcome new hires at your worksite by introducing yourself and popularize and promote Union consciousness and values in the workplace.
- Assist the representative by handing out Union memos, flyers and information to members that keep members involved and informed.
- Engage members to participate in union activities by completing contract surveys. Union contract surveys have been electronically sent out to members and they are a great way to receive feed back on what members feel are important to be addressed in negotiations.
For our members in health care facilities–since the beginning of March, COVID-19 has caused the state to impose a no visitation policy at each facility. Union Representatives have not been allowed to visit members in their workplace, so the Stewards have done a great job communicating with their rep about any issues or concerns in the workplace.
UFCW Local 663 had to cancel it’s last Steward Trainings Seminar due to COVID-19, but will continue to connect with existing Stewards on a weekly basis to make sure they have the tools to continue to play a critical role in building workers strength from an organized and informed membership.
Please remember that we will all get through this together and the struggle we are in today is developing the strength we need for tomorrow.
THANK YOU STEWARDS FOR YOUR DEDICATION AND COMMITMENT TO BUILDING A BETTER LIFE FOR MEMBERS.