UFCW Local 653 Lunds & Byerlys Bargaining Committee

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UFCW Local 653 Kowalski’s Bargaining Committee

UFCW Local 653

Kowalski’s Bargaining Committee Members 2018

Melissa Charles, Lyndale

Kim Cizl, Uptown

Elizabeth Johnson, Uptown

Rob Mavison, Eagan

Jacob Stromquist, Parkview

Paul Vonbargen, Eagan

Rhonda Weidling, Uptown

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MN Men’s Roller Derby January 20

Hi, my name is Ace, and I am currently on the UFCW Local 653 bargaining committee for Seward Co-op. By night, my name is VelociSlaughter and I skate with Minnesota Men’s Roller Derby, and our Travel Team, the Twin City Terrors!

We have a home bout coming up on Saturday, January 20 and I’d love to see folks there! Tickets are only $5 and children 10 and under are free. Our league will be dividing into two home teams, each inspired by wizards from fiction. Come out and cheer for great roller derby action!

Love, Slaughter







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Members at Gold Cross Ambulance vote for better lives

Congratulations to UFCW Local 653 members at Gold Cross Ambulance in Mankato, MN who ratified a three year agreement on December 29, 2017. Members at Gold Cross are paramedics and EMTs in Greater Minnesota.

Highlights of the agreement which went into effect on January 1, 2018 include wage increases for all members as well as language updates that improve on-call status and scheduling for members.

(Pictured are paramedic Michelle Zeigler and EMT and Steward John Harding.)


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Enroll in Free College deadline January 12

A great UFCW member benefit is free college! Enroll now for spring semester.

Check out the link for more information: http://www.ufcw.org/College/

Deadline is January 12, 2018!

If you are a UFCW 653 member and are considering enrolling, let your union representative know! We’d like to feature you in an upcoming article for our membership!

Happy Holidays!

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Eastside Food Cooperative Workers Ratify First Union Contract and Secure A Better Life

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Minneapolis, MN – Eastside Food Co-op workers ratified their first three-year contract, which will begin on January 1, 2018 and includes raises for all employees as well as establishes a just cause discipline procedure. Over seventy percent of Eastside Food Co-op employees voted to join United Food and Commercial Workers Local 653 in April.

“With this agreement, we won a stronger voice in the everyday conditions that impact our work environment and our experience working at Eastside—more equitable wages, adequate staffing and training, and timely addressing labor and safety concerns,” said Seth Kuhl-Stennes from the Front End.

“I’m excited that we’re going to be paid based on our experience, our knowledge and our the time we’ve been working here making Eastside successful,” said DK Prince from the Deli department.

“I know that we’re leaving a better co-op for future employees and for the community. I think it’s important to work at a place that values workers’ voices,” said MJ Banken from Beverage Bar & Cafe.

Community support for Eastside Food Co-op workers has been steady throughout the bargaining process.

As a longtime member of Eastside Food Co-op, a former EFC board member, and a union member, I am very excited that the workers here will be ratifying their first contract.  The success of our co-op is due in large part to the workers’ dedication and hard work, and this contract will ensure that they are treated fairly and with respect.  This is truly co-op values in action,” said Joy Anderson.

“I am inspired by the Eastside Food Co-op workers courage to stand up. Our union family is proud to help everyone at Eastside to improve their workplace and raise standards for all retail workers in Minnesota,” said President Matt Utecht of UFCW Local 653.


UFCW Local 653 is a private sector union over 10,000 Minnesota workers strong in the grocery, food processing, retail, and other industries.

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UFCW 653’s Mark McGraw receives OUTreach scholarship to national Creating Change Conference

New UFCW Local 653 member Mark McGraw of Linden Hills Co-op recently received one of five prestigious nationwide UFCW OUTreach scholarships to attend the Creating Change Conference in Washington D.C. this January. Congratulations!

Mark is thoughtful, inclusive, and fearless in his organizing. His humor and ability to speak the truth helped advance conversations with fellow bargaining committee members and co-workers in store more than once throughout the organizing and bargaining. He took the time to talk to every co-worker about wanting to represent them at the bargaining table and asked for their vote – he ended up with the most votes.

The Creating Change Conference is organized by the National LGBTQ Task Force and it is the foremost political, leadership and skills-building conference for thousands of committed people to develop and hone their skills and share victories. In the past two years, the OUTreach Executive Board members have participated as one of the leading workshop presenters, putting our union, UFCW, in the forefront as a key voice for working class and labor issues at this conference. In a time where the labor movement and everything we have fought for is under attack, OUTreach’s dedication to organizing social and economic justice for all workers and ensuring full equality of LGBTQ workers at work and in their union reflects our union’s commitment to building a resilient working class that is not divided by hate.

UFCW OUTreach is a constituency group dedicated to building mutual support between our union’s International, regions, and locals and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community and their allies in order to come together to organize for social and economic justice for all, regardless of age, race, gender, creed, color, sexual orientation, or gender identity. Together, they will ensure full equality for LGBT workers on their jobs and in their unions.

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What do you want to see in New Fact Finder?

Attention UFCW Local 653 members! We’re redesigning the Fact Finder newsletter to better fit the needs of our membership. Best newsletter ever? Yes! But only with your help. Please take one minute to do this quick online survey so we can listen and respond to your voice! Thank you!

Complete survey here!



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Ours Resort Half Priced Deals!

Ours Resort is a special place any time of year, and it’s a wonderful destination in the winter.  It’s located just one mile from the Lutsen Mountains ski resort, which has great ski slopes.  There are also nearby snowmobile and cross country ski trails.  Even if you’re not into outdoor activities, it’s hard to beat sitting in front of a nice fire looking over Lake Superior.

Sound interesting? We’re making it even more affordable than usual! Starting December 1, reservations made for stays between January 1 – March 31, 2018, are HALF PRICE!
Ours Resort is owned and operated by UFCW Local 653. It consists of six cabins on Lake Superior in Lutsen, MN. Each cabin is fully furnished–you only need to bring your food, clothes, and personal items. (Check our web-site–www.ufcw653.org–under Member Benefits for more information.)

Ours Resort is available to active, dues-paying members of Local 653 and retired mem-bers who are receiving a UFCW Local 653 pension.  Call Sandy at the Local 653 office (763-525-1500) today to make your reservations.  You’ll be glad you did! Ours Half-Price Sale Flyer

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Union Label now proudly at Linden Hills Food Co-op

The UFCW Local 653 Union Label window cling is now proudly facing customers as they enter Linden Hills Food Co-op. Have a great weekend, everyone! #unionlabel #1u #checkthelabel #shopunion

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