Teamsters Local 727 representatives have taken action to inform the public of CVS management’s mistreatment of its overworked and understaffed pharmacists.
Union representatives passed out handbills to customers and passersby outside CVS #8699 (137 S. State St.) and #8745 (771 N. Milwaukee Ave.) in downtown Chicago on April 27 and April 28 to inform the public of the safety risks involved when pharmacists are not given sufficient support.
“When pharmacists are constantly given more work with less help and little down time during their long and demanding shifts, this can affect their performance and overall well-being. It also can impact customer safety,” said John Coli Jr., President of Local 727. “If reaching out to the public helps to protect our pharmacists and their customers’ health, then it is worth it.”
After five full days of contract negotiations between the Teamsters Local 727 Bargaining Committee and CVS management, very little progress has been made toward reaching a new agreement for about 150 Chicago-area pharmacists.
The union has repeatedly reiterated its concerns over pharmacists’ “quality of life issues,” such as uninterrupted breaks, sufficient tech hours, preservation of the nine-hour workday, and elimination of demeaning tasks that take away from pharmacists’ primary job responsibilities.
“Pharmacists are professionals whose top priorities are patient care and public safety,” Coli said. “We are calling on management to take pharmacists’ concerns seriously and make progress on these quality of life issues so pharmacists return their full focus to taking care of their customers.”
The final two days of negotiations are scheduled for May 2 and May 3. The current three-year contract expires May 7.