Festival Bargaining Continues, Contract Extended
On May 5 and 6, the Union Committee and Employer continued to meet to bargain a new contract for Festival employees and Knowlan’s meat department workers. Having settled the non-economic issues on the May 4, the two sides continued discussing economic issues. The Employer presented their wage package, which can be viewed at the link below.
The Union and the Employer were able to come to an agreement on language about bereavement leave (see below). However, by Thursday afternoon it was clear that the two sides were still far apart on wages and benefits, so the Union prepared a comprehensive package offer. As part of that offer, the Union dropped several items and countered the employer’s wage and benefits proposal, in an attempt to meet in the middle. As a package, the entire proposal could either be rejected or accepted, so the things that were dropped in the package would still be up for negotiating if the package is not accepted. When the committee presented the package on Friday morning, the Employer agreed that movement was made, but since the two sides were still very far apart the session ended early with the Employer rejecting the package. The two sides signed a contract extension, and bargaining will resume on June 7.