A&P/Pathmark Update from President John T. Niccollai - 10/1/15

A&P/PATHMARK UPDATE – 10-1-2015
FROM PRESIDENT JOHN T. NICCOLLAI

The Rumor Mill is rampant again.  Every possible scenario is being presented as fact and, as usual with the Rumor Mill, very little is true.  We will do our best to try and sift through the most important information that is being disseminated.

First and foremost, we are in the home stretch with Acme and Stop & Shop and have some benefit issues to resolve prior to executing a formal agreement.  We expect all former A&P/Pathmark employees in the stores purchased to be retained unless they were previously terminated from Acme or Stop & Shop for cause.  We also expect pay rates for job classifications to be preserved.  This accomplishment is monumental and certainly well beyond what most people thought possible.

We have been working very diligently to get Severance and continued Health Care benefits for those members presently in the stores yet unsold.  Although the Bankruptcy Judge has not ruled on that specific issue, our Professionals have led us to believe that the same Severance paid to our members in the stores already closed will be provided to all other members severed.  If this expected result comes to fruition, it will provide an essential safety net for our unemployed members seeking reemployment.

The sale of stores at the auction commenced as scheduled this morning at the General Motors building in New York City.  An especially large number of bidders are qualified and in attendance at that sale.  Every Local Union, along with our Professionals, are presently at the sale and will be in attendance on all four days of the sale.

Judge Drain has stated emphatically, on several occasions, that there’s to be no leakage of information or collusion among groups participating in the process.  We can inform you that as stores are sold, we are proceeding to sign Recognition Agreements.  I personally find it very difficult in being restrained from communicating greater details of the sale process, but I also understand that the leakage of confidential information could well harm the auction process and, in the end, cost us thousands of vital new employment opportunities.

Apart from today’s auction, another date has been scheduled for tomorrow and then two additional dates have been set for the end of next week.  We project that Judge Drain will make the auction results public shortly thereafter.  As soon as we find out those results, we will report the same to our membership.

We want to reconfirm to all our members employed in stores yet unsold that we are working day and night to maximize the creation of jobs on your behalf.  We have been in those stores and we see the concerns and uncertainty in each and every one of our Brothers and Sisters faces.  The one thing we want to prevent is despair.

The auction process is proceeding well.  In discussions with Acme and Stop & Shop, we are confident that we will see job opportunities for those unemployed.  The ability to get Severance and continued Health Care on your behalf is on course.  Most importantly, always remember that you belong to a Labor Union that will not abandon you, and that prides itself in being comparable to a family that takes care of one another.

Just a short comment on a story being reported by Supermarket News; about $12.6 million in payments for A&P top Executives and other insiders.  This Union finds those payments outrageous and unconscionable.  We are losing our jobs from a mismanaged Company that has the audacity to reward those that are causing our misery and strife.  Your Union strongly believes, and will fight for the concept that those funds should be recovered and used to benefit the Union workers and the creditors.  Supermarket News reported that there could be a “Claw Back” (move to recapture those funds).  

May Justice Prevail!!