Aetna Responds to Teamsters Local 727 Letters to Executives, No Word from CVS

| October 22, 2018

CHICAGO, October 22, 2018 – Only days after Teamsters Local 727 mailed letters to top executives of Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET), an Aetna representative informed the Union that the Company had opened an investigation into Local 727’s reports of CVS (NYSE: CVS) deflecting “all Union attempts to bargain in good faith, while seeking to limit wages, force longer work hours on already overworked pharmacists, and remove PICS from the bargaining unit by replacing them with non-union managers.”  The U.S. Department of Justice last week greenlit a merger between the Fortune 50 health insurer and retail pharmacy giant.

A representative of the Aetna Executive Resolution Team later informed the Union that the Company has escalated the issue to the attention of CVS executives.

“For months CVS executives have ignored over 50 letters this Union sent detailing the disrespectful and unlawful manner in which Company negotiators are conducting negotiations.  It took Aetna mere days to respond and take action,” said Local 727 Secretary-Treasurer John Coli, Jr.  “While CVS top brass doesn’t seem to be too concerned with the wellbeing of their dedicated employees, it’s encouraging to hear their stakeholders are.”

The collective bargaining agreement between CVS and Teamsters Local 727 covering registered pharmacists, graduate non-registered pharmacists, and student pharmacy interns employed in the Chicagoland area expired on May 7, 2016.

Despite years of negotiating, including nearly two years in mediation, CVS has repeatedly delayed progress and refused to indicate what movement it is willing to make on its initial proposals.  Company negotiators have proposed no wage increase to cover the lengthy negotiation period and have yet to explain why they believe pharmacists do not deserve a pay increase.

As reported in the New York Times, many supporters of the Aetna-CVS merger are eager for the potential use of CVS pharmacies and clinics as locations for Aetna customers to receive treatment and care.

While many look forward to this possibility, Local 727 made clear in its letters to Aetna that “a rapid influx in new patients who use CVS would further exacerbate the existing problems pharmacists face.”

Teamsters Local 727 invites Aetna to be proactive and join CVS at the negotiating table.  Hear these pharmacists describe their long, break-free workdays, listen to the litany of superfluous tasks they are mandated to complete, and witness first-hand the disrespect and disdain with which their good faith bargaining is met.

Teamsters Local 727 and CVS are next scheduled to meet on November 14th.

Teamsters Local 727 represents nearly 10,000 hardworking men and women throughout the Chicago area.

Founded in 1903, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.

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CONTACT: Melissa Senatore, (847) 696-7500


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