New worker center reaches out to poultry, packinghouse workers in Minnesota

The Hardman Avenue Workers Center, located at the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1189 hall in South St. Paul, opened with a celebration and free citizenship workshops for immigrant workers last week. The goal of the initiative, Local 1189 organizing director Abraham Wangnoo said, is to “start teaching people what their rights are,” particularly […]

Medical cannabis workers’ new contract reflects industry growth

Workers at Minnesota Medical Solutions, one of two companies authorized by the state to produce medical cannabis, voted unanimously Jan. 12 to ratify a new union contract that reflects – and anticipates – growth in the industry. The three-year pact includes annual wage increases, provides premium pay for lead positions and time spent training other […]

Lawmakers seek answers as Walmart strains local police time, municipal resources

State Rep. John Lesch, a prosecutor in St. Paul for 15 years, can recite the address from memory: 1450 University Avenue West. That’s Walmart’s Midway location, and it is a magnet for shoplifting and other petty crime that, like several other Walmart stores in Minnesota and across the country, absorbs a disproportionate amount of attention […]

Insurance plan trustee advises members ‘go elsewhere for care’ during Allina strike

The president of a major Minnesota union sent a letter this week to members enrolled in its health insurance plans urging them to “go elsewhere for health care” during the Allina strike. Jennifer Christensen, president of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1189, cited concerns about “quality control” and patient safety at five Allina Health […]

East Metro grocery workers reject ‘final offer,’ urge continued negotiations

In a nearly unanimous vote yesterday, East Metro grocery workers rejected a hastily crafted “final offer” from their employers. About 3,700 members of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1189 began contract negotiations in late February with several St. Paul-area retail grocers, including Cub Foods, Rainbow, Jerry’s Foods, Lunds & Byerlys, Kowalski’s Markets, Festival Foods, […]

UFCW local honors Seaquist during last meeting as president

Don Seaquist presided over his last meeting as United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1189’s top officer last night. But Seaquist, who’s served as president of the local since 2003, did not go quietly into retirement. After thanking Local 1189’s members and staff, as well as his family members in attendance, Seaquist led his favorite […]

Workers OK first contract, making Wedge first union co-op in Minnesota

Workers at the Wedge voted Tuesday to ratify their first union contract, making the Minneapolis grocer the state’s first unionized co-op. Wedge Community Co-op workers voted last November to join United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1189, seeking higher wages, an equitable process for dealing with management and a voice in decisions that affect the co-op’s […]