UFCW Local 324 Members Instrumental in Moving Policies Bettering Working People’s Lives

UFCW Local 324

June 6, 2023
Contact: Jenna Thompson, 949.246.1620, jthompson@ufcw324.org 

UFCW Local 324 Members Instrumental in Moving Policies Bettering Working People’s Lives

Buena Park, CA – The United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 324 is proud to announce that all seven pieces of legislation the union is supporting passed their first floor votes and have moved onto the second house. Passage of these bills would not have been possible without the involvement of UFCW Local 324 members who met with legislators in district, traveled to Sacramento to speak at press conferences, attended lobby days and told their personal stories to legislators on why they should support these bills.

“Our members’ personal stories and testimony about these bills were instrumental in getting legislative support for these bills,” said Andrea Zinder, president, UFCW Local 324. “The members took time off of work and left their families to travel to Sacramento to let lawmakers know how the legislation they’re voting on from paid sick leave to increased transparency around plastic bag fees affects working people. I’m proud of our members’ commitment and passion for these policies, which helps ensure elected officials keep working people in the front of their minds when they’re voting.”

“Getting to sit down with our elected officials and tell them just how a bill will affect my life was nerve-racking, but very empowering,” said Pio Figueroa, a grocery clerk at Ralphs in Laguna Beach. “I was able to represent not just my fellow UFCW 324 members, but grocery workers across the state, tell lawmakers how mergers and acquisitions will affect my livelihood and my future, and urge legislators to support a package of bills to mitigate the effects of the proposed Kroger-Albertsons merger. It’s important that us workers tell our stories and continue to educate elected officials because our experiences are valuable and must be told to ensure policies to support working people will get passed.”

The package of bills UFCW Local 324, and locals throughout California, are asking legislators to support are:

SB 725 (Smallwood-Cuevas): Safety Net for Grocery Workers Act

SB 725 would create a safety net for essential workers by requiring any grocery store that conducts a layoff as a result of a merger or acquisition to provide workers at least one-week severance pay for every year of service.

AB 647 (Holden): Grocery Worker Protection Act

This bill protects grocery and pharmacy workers’ jobs by strengthening California’s existing Statewide Grocery Worker Retention Law, requiring recall and rehiring rights for workers, and expanding protections to warehouse workers.

AB 853 (Maienschein): Californians’ Right to Know on Essential Goods and Services

AB 853 will require grocery or drug-retail companies to notify the California Attorney General 180 days in advance of finalizing a proposed merger or acquisition and submit an impact analysis report on the impact of the merger or acquisition on communities, such as food deserts, food prices, and access to food, and workers, such as supply of experienced grocery workers, unemployment, wages and benefits and more. 

SB 553 (Cortese): Workplace Violence Prevention

SB 553 would implement basic health and safety measures to better prepare and protect all workers from workplace violence, such as maintaining workplace violence prevention plans, tracking workplace violence incidents, providing active shooter and shoplifter training, and prohibiting employers from requiring workers to approach active shoplifters as part of any shoplifting deterrence policy.

SB 616 (Gonzalez): Paid Sick Days for All Working Californians

SB 616 would increase the amount of paid sick leave days an employer is required to provide an employee from three to seven without requiring a doctor’s note.

SB 777 (Allen): Plastic Bag Fee Transparency

SB 777 will provide much-needed transparency and accountability on plastic bag surcharge allocations, as required in SB 270 (Padilla – 2014), by requiring retail establishments that sell plastic bags to submit a quarterly report to CalRecycle specifying the actual costs for implementing the provisions of SB 270, actual costs for providing the reusable bags, costs associated with a store’s educational materials or educational campaigns encouraging the use of reusable grocery bags, and costs associated with recycling. 

AB 1286 (Haney): Stop Dangerous Pharmacies Act

AB 1286 is a first-in-the-nation patient safety law that protects Californians from life-threatening medication errors at understaffed and unsafe pharmacies. This bill gives pharmacists autonomy over unsafe working conditions and staffing levels and guarantees minimum staffing by ensuring that a pharmacist has a clerk or technician with them at all times. 


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