Osco management opened the third day of federal mediation with the Teamsters Local 727 Bargaining Committee by promising to provide a complete, comprehensive offer. After seven hours, however, the company still has not provided such an offer, so instead, the Local 727 Bargaining Committee gave Osco management its last, best and final offer on all outstanding economic and non-economic issues.
“We had to take action because the company would not,” said John T. Coli, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 727. “This is our bottom line, and we are serious about it. And now the ball is in their court.”
The Local 727 Bargaining Committee’s offer includes 2.5 percent wage increases, guaranteed reduced health care premiums and guaranteed 401(k) contributions as well as non-economic improvements for tech hours/overlap, coverage, part-timers’ benefits, job postings and floaters’ geographic restrictions.
“I think this truly is the best we can do. It’s a reasonable offer, and we worked hard to get our demands as succinct as possible,” said overnight pharmacist steward Michael Trnka, a Bargaining Committee member.
Head pharmacist steward Melissa Henry, also a Bargaining Committee member, agreed.
“We can’t accept anything less than this,” Henry said. “This offer reflects the major concerns of pharmacists.”
The contract extension covering about 500 Chicago-area Osco pharmacists expired May 20. The union and management do not have an additional extension agreement in place, so pharmacists are now working without a contract. Under federal law, Osco may not change the status quo of any working condition during bargaining, even after the contract expires.
The union will update members as mediation continues.