Workers Win Union with ILWU Despite Rite Aid Anti-Union Drive

Mar 23, 2008 Full story: AFLCIO.org 3,090

Ignacio 'Nacho' Meza, foreground, and his co-workers fought for two years to win a voice at Rite Aid. via AFLCIO.org

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seeking justice

Lancaster, CA

#1 Mar 26, 2008
today Rite Aid fired 3 more union supporters and suspended one at their Lancaster D.C. They went as far as to having a female manager follow a male worker into the mens restroom and peer through the crack in the stall door wile he was using the facility's and then accuse him of text messaging and then proceed to suspend him. They have been retaliating every since we won the vote to be represented by the ILWU.THIS IS A CALL FOR HELP I don't know how much more of this we can take.This is against the law of labor practice and we plan to file charges.
you were warned

Lancaster, CA

#2 Apr 15, 2008
Ive been at Rite Aid for 9 years now and the firings like it or not were justified. All I can say is you guys wanted a union shop now that your getting a taste of it you can;t hack it. By voting in this union you've ruined a perfectly good work place. Lets see what you've won when the first contract we vote on has a cut in pay for the whole building. You guys are a bunch of greedy people thinking that we can get a 5.00 an hour raise. Whose gonna come up with the additional six and a quarter million dollars a year a 5.00 an hour raise would cost. The union? LOL. They spend their money( well actually your money since they are union members dues) on tee shirts and flyers full of lies. Remember what was said by the fool they flew in from san francisco for the union meeting there are no guarantees.
sour apples

Raleigh, NC

#3 Apr 21, 2008
I hope "you've been warned" can take some constructive criticism, but it's people with attitudes such as you have that I thank my lucky stars that we have a union.
you were warned

AOL

#4 Apr 23, 2008
I don't mind the constructive criticism. I just wish it had come from someone that knew our situation. We have two major distribution centers in our community and we make more than a dollar an hour more than the other DC. Rite Aid also has 8 DC'S no I'm not counting the recently aquired Brooks Eckards dc's. Out of all of the DC's 3 of them our union facilities and here's a shocker the non union dc's not only make more than 1.00 an hour more than the union dcs we have a nicer building. The people that voted this union in are driven by nothing more than greed. I have never seen a company try to do as much for their employees as Rite Aid has. There honestly is no need for unions in corprorate America anymore. They are doing nothing more than hurting businesses and destroying the union members. If you feel that statment is wrong the next time your buying groceries ask the store workers how they feel about their unions.
sour apples

Raleigh, NC

#5 May 6, 2008
I firmly do not believe that "greed" had anything to do with Rite Aid employees wanting a union at the DC. I believe first and foremost is that most employees wanted to be treated with dignity and respect. Employees want to work in an environment free of fear and hostility. Employees want fair rate and/or time standars, pro-rep is unreasonable and unfairly enforced. Employees want discipline to be fair, just and equitable, discipline that is corrective rather than punitive, progressive discipline. Clearly the way Rite Aid management has conducted themselves over the last several years demonstrates their inability to adhere to these principles. Maybe a union contract will help with the disparate working conditions management currently promotes. Greed, I believe, has nothing do to with it. Also, unions will not ask for more monies to which the company can afford. Today's economy, I admit, will make it difficult to justify any exceptional rate increase and I believe most employees and especially the union ,are aware of this, so greed is not what pushed the union into the Rite Aid DC. In facilities such as the DC, a union will be nothing but beneficial under the current working conditions that Rite Aid management promotes. There is absolutely no "job security" at the DC and I'd rather have job security and an improved working environment over a rate increase at this juncture. Though regular cost of living adjustments would be nice. Do you think Rite Aid will voluntarily provide for regular cost of living adjustment?
Sour Apples

Beverly Hills, CA

#6 May 6, 2008
By the Way "you were warned"...I am local & am completely aware of your situation at the Rite Aid DC, which is why I KNOW that the union can only benefit a DC under the current management structure!
John

Pittsburgh, PA

#7 Jun 18, 2008
seeking justice wrote:
today Rite Aid fired 3 more union supporters and suspended one at their Lancaster D.C. They went as far as to having a female manager follow a male worker into the mens restroom and peer through the crack in the stall door wile he was using the facility's and then accuse him of text messaging and then proceed to suspend him. They have been retaliating every since we won the vote to be represented by the ILWU.THIS IS A CALL FOR HELP I don't know how much more of this we can take.This is against the law of labor practice and we plan to file charges.
In the Pittsburgh Pennsylvania area, Rite Aid is firing many of it's former Brooks/Eckert employees because of the buy out of Eckert and Brooks last year. These employees are being harassed and falsely accused of just about anything. They are doing this because they have no place for the former Eckert/Brooks employees to go after changing the former Eckert/Brooks stores to Rite Aid. Rite Aid figures its cheaper to fire these people, rather than give them a severance package.They figure most employees will find work elsewhere and probably will not take action. My question is: would it be a good idea for these stores to go union? Please let me know?
Unions suck

United States

#8 Jun 24, 2008
Ok first off SOUR APPLES do you work at the rite aid DC in Lancaster ?
Sour Apples

Raleigh, NC

#9 Jul 23, 2008
Unions suck wrote:
Ok first off SOUR APPLES do you work at the rite aid DC in Lancaster ?
Nope! But I do have several personal friends who are rite aid DC workers in Lancaster & am very much aware of the disparate treatment of its workers, the disparate & unjust discipline, the disregard towards heat issues and total lack of treating its employees with dignity and respect. I have been on both sides of the coin as a Chief Shop Steward and Management. It is in my opinion that in Rite Aid's DC in Lancaster, a union will only benefit it employees.

Is "union sucks" a craft employee or a manager at the Rite Aid DC in Lanacaster?
BMarsh

AOL

#10 Aug 3, 2008
If you are not happy working in a union environment, you may exercise your right to depart. I bet you won't.
YOU WERE WARNED

Camp Hill, PA

#11 Aug 5, 2008
BMarsh wrote:
If you are not happy working in a union environment, you may exercise your right to depart. I bet you won't.
If these people that voted in this union didn't like working in a non union facility maybe they should have found work in a union facility before they voted to ruin our workplace. And as for the mistreatment by management I guess its wrong for management to expect the employees to come to work and do the job that we get paid a more that fair wage to do. We also have a more than adequate work environment. If the workers think its hot in our center during the summer maybe they should get a job working outside in the 100+ degree heat. By the way the temp. never topped 90 in our building.
newbie

Temecula, CA

#12 Aug 12, 2008
just like my user-name implies... I am a newbie... been working there for about a year and still in probation cuz... "I'll get to you tomorrow" excuse keeps going on with-in all my managers...

hence why sour apples mentioned the "structure" of management, which is just a complete absence... only people with a high school mentality working by preference...

And to the guy or girl before me, it reaches and goes above 100 outside here for a couple of months..imagine how hot it gets inside and thinking that associates before me were working without air conditioning and a guy died because of it and the company rejected and ignored the family . with the new air conditioning we now receive hot air blown strait towards us. the only benefit of this system is, at least we do not have stale air in our environment just constant moving hot air. but every our in our hottest days we get 5 to 10 minutes breaks... Just to let you know they don't want to get in trouble for any more deaths by following minimum state regulations.

I don't really care if there is a union or not. Both have its own pros and cons.

Rite aid is just trying to make as much money as possible (that's the business world accept it) so associates are not at the top of "important things to take care of" list. By also doing this rite is losing much money by having a bunch of newbies there (damage products, missing days, retraining, slow working cuz lack of experience, cheaters, etc)

I have noticed that Rite Aid tends to keep people who are not the best. Meaning they keep people who are easily controlled and will not talk back. Most people who were great exemplary workers have been let go because they question much of the company structure and procedures.

There is no flexibility at all. i score constantly well above 100 percent and been called a liar by the company. we are not allowed to speak period, while we watch our managers laugh drinking coffee or leaning or rails, etc. for long periods of time. There is no communication between associates and upper management. Which explains why they get upset of what is going on in the warehouse because they are not there or care what is going on as long it gets done.

My stay here isn't permanent there .. Just needed something immediately since i was new to Lancaster. Lancaster, even though it is growing, has nothing to offer for us with specialty training or 6 to 10 year diplomas, that's why you find us working in such places. Lack of options.

But it is annoying how badly Rite Aid is managed and inefficiently thought out. But what can you expect from people who are not trained to be professionals about it and only care about money? I'm just ranting here and feel sorry for those who are gonna stay there.

I feel that even with a union there, Rite Aid has planned not to changed or give in at all. Just slowly fire those who are involved with the union and slowly people will lose interest with the union and well u know the rest.

Good luck to everyone ... and if Any of Rite Aid main kids are listening. You say that we should come to you for anything and you will work with us to improve the work environment but I've seen that instead of seeing open arms we just get your backs and distrusts. At least live up to your own words and act like professional adults, anger and negative comments are signs of immaturity.
IA Heart

Lancaster, CA

#13 Aug 12, 2008
How many illegal aliens are working there?

I bet between Rite Aid and Michael's that little intersection could be called "Little Mexico"
newbie

Temecula, CA

#14 Aug 13, 2008
funny "bigot" i mean IA Heart.

I cannot answer for Michael but Rite Aid to my knowledge, in this case, is clean. They have to be since they have a contract with the city.

Truth be saying there are not that many "Mexicans" working there. There's a bit from every corner of the world, pretty much balance out.

But that has nothing to do with ILWU topic
Gone from there

San Diego, CA

#15 Sep 4, 2008
I just had a few small observations about the Lancaster DC and all the complaints of heat. To qualify - I quit Rite AId a year ago and only spent a year working at the DC in Lancaster. THough it wasn't air conditioned, it did have swamp coolers with air piped into all the pick areas. Having spent time in DC's down in the Ontario area as well, this is the nicest facility for employees that I have seen. I've been in Ontario where it is often over 100 degrees daily in summer as well and no ac or swamp coolers, only fans that were few and far between. The other DC's were true sweat shops and I'd like to hear the whining if any of the Rite-Aid DC'ers saw what other companies don't do for their employees.

The Rite-AId DC was the nicest for employees I've been in. Others have a break room or maybe 2 with a few vending machines. RA has a cafeteria, pool tables, ping pong, foos-ball, video games, a gym and several break rooms with vending machines and TV's - though the reception and channel selection was bad.

On pro-rep; I think they do run it badly. I've been in similar programs where you were required to do 70-100%(depending on company and how realistic the number was) and then were paid a bonus for over-performing ie 100+%. THis would stop the complaints on pro-rep if they offered a realistic incentive program to their employees.

Management is bad at most places to some degree. There will always be some favortism for employees that are more well liked or kiss more butt. It's human nature.

Anyhow, I ramble. My point is that the Rite Aid DC was better than most I've been in. If you want a cushy ac'ed desk job a DC is not the place to be.
THE TRUTH

Camp Hill, PA

#16 Sep 22, 2008
The truth is most of the people who voted for the union are non-skilled workers. They should be happy at the amount they make driving forklifts. I havent seen one place in L.a that pays forklift operators that much. Dont get me wrong I work at rite-aid and its a pretty good job. But now these uneducated fukers have screwed it up for all of us. And right now everybody is nervous because they are laying people off left and right. If the union works for us cool,,, if not i will be finding another job soon.And by the way the union barely got in here.They wouldnt even let everybody vote.
Solidarity Bother

Santa Clarita, CA

#17 Sep 27, 2008
This is from a former employee from even before the union drive:

http://www.planetfeedback.com/rite+aid/other/...

Things haven't changed...and won't until we get a contract!
Solidarity Bother

Santa Clarita, CA

#18 Sep 27, 2008
To "You Were Warned": You must be an ass-kissing office clerk sitting in you air-conditioned office feeling pretty proud of yourself! You are so ignorant:

"Lets see what you've won when the first contract we vote on has a cut in pay for the whole building. You guys are a bunch of greedy people thinking that we can get a 5.00 an hour raise."

HELLO??? If WE vote for a cut in pay??? How then would we be greedy???!!!

"Whose gonna come up with the additional six and a quarter million dollars a year a 5.00 an hour raise would cost."

Rite Aid will! They absorb the cost...They operate in the Economic Enterprise Zone in Lancaster...tax subsidies that can equal to at least $3/hr more in raises! What they have been squandering from employees in their first 5 years of employment.

The Woodland DC has consistantly made $2 more than their Lancaster counterparts, and their cost of living is less that LA County's.

"They spend their money( well actually your money since they are union members dues) on tee shirts and flyers full of lies."

WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? We haven't paid one cent in dues yet! What about RA? They've made their fair share of anti-union flyers using company supplies. If you're going there, what's good for the goose is good for the gander! And the lies came from the RA campaign...I myself made sure of the truth and validity of Union flyers going out to my brothers and sisters!!! I, unlike you, educated myself before I voted. I made sure that the lies you spewed on behalf of your buddy mgt. team were thwarted at every turn.

But Sour Apples is right about it not only being a wage issue! It's all about working conditions. It obviously does get to 90 dgerees because RA called heat breaks according to their own Heat Response Guide (oh, you work in the air-conditioning...how would you know?). The production rates are never adjusted for heat or unseen problems that could delay a person's rate (oh, Pro-Rep doesn't apply to "easy-money" jobs like yours). Harrassment and intimidation should not be tolerated anywhere in the United States (oh, I forgot, you kiss ass, so you have never experienced it). They even tried to get me, but I haven't been there this long for being a slacker!

You are clearly the fool now!
Solidarity Bother

Santa Clarita, CA

#19 Sep 27, 2008
To "Gone From There": You are right! The RA DC is a great facility; no one has suggested otherwise. It is the working conditions that are the issue.

"THough it wasn't air conditioned, it did have swamp coolers with air piped into all the pick areas."

Are you sure that you are talking about the Lancaster DC? The ducts you are referring to have not been working for 3 years, and there are no swamp coolers any where. The system that piped air throught he ducts is "outdated" and "not worth repairing" according to my sources.

We don't necessarily want a nice cushy desk job. We just want to be treated like human beings.

Anyway, good luck to you.
Solidarity Bother

Santa Clarita, CA

#20 Sep 27, 2008
(Finally) To "The Truth": Your truth seems to be a little distorted; forklift driving is by no means unskilled labor! There are many places in Los Angeles who pay their forklift drivers more than we make (especially unionized ones), and yes, there are some who don't. This is why you need to be careful of whom you call uneducated. Your entire comment shows just how educated you are: The union isn't even there yet, and you are blaming it for the people being laid off? It sounds more like economy-woes to me. Better yet, why don't you blame (mis)management for our troubles, first? Or even go as far as the anti-labor Bush administration? If the company closes, the company closes it! Not the union, nor its supporters. It's just the sort of chicken-shit action I would expect from Rite Aid anyway!

I will not allow Rite Aid to change my values: Decent pay and humane working conditions is not a substitute for poor management, and the working class should always fight for that...if not for us, then for our children!

I hope you come around, Brother!

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