A&P/Pathmark Update from President John T. Niccollai - 8/19/15

A&P/PATHMARK UPDATE – 8/19/2015

Our matter concerning bumping and severance pay was brought to the attention of the Honorable Judge Robert D. Drain in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.  We are pleased to report that in total, almost 8,000 signatures were presented to the Court.  We thank our Brothers and Sisters for helping in a forceful presentation of our concerns.

The Court, as of yesterday, has adjourned further hearings on this matter to a time and date to be determined.  The purpose for the adjournment is to allow the parties to discuss the matter further, in an attempt to reach an amicable solution.

Some of the concepts discussed at the initial Public Hearing, have your Leadership at Local 464A deeply troubled.  A concept was discussed relating to cost-neutral bumping.  Cost-neutral bumping is a concept that we do not recognize since, by definition, bumping should allow employees not only to retain their years of service, but also the rate of pay into the new workplace location.  Cost-neutral bumping would require the person bumping not only to assume the positon of the person bumped, but also their wage rate.

We understand the Bankruptcy Court, because of the very nature of the problems in which it deals, has become a House of Pain.  Many times unsuccessful, incompetent business operators, because of their failures, petition the Court to spread the economic deficiencies of their actions among creditors, lenders, investors, workers and others.  You may ask, why then are we in the Bankruptcy Court and the answer is quite simple; the Bankruptcy Court is the forum we must use where a Company seeks a reorganization or a dissolution of its business.

We also know that Judge Drain is a most learned member of the Bench, and he works tirelessly to try and secure decisions that reflect concepts of fair play and propriety.  The matter at hand here is most difficult and requires the Court to consider the position of the debtors, the creditors, the acquiring Companies and the workforce.

As your Local Union, our purpose is to protect you, the worker, to the best of our ability.  In fulfilling that role, we concluded that we needed to fight untiringly to preserve our severance pay and, especially, the well-being of our senior members by implementing the bumping process.  It was never the intent, by waging this battle, to permit bumping to take place where that bumping did not include members retaining their former wages.

As we talk further with the Company in the days to come, we will make our position clear through our Attorneys and through face to face meetings with the Company.  A job must pay a worker commensurate with the lifestyle that he or she has assumed through the years.  To take a senior member and reduce wages to entry level is manifestly unfair, improper and violative of the established concepts relating to bumping.

We will continue to keep our members informed on this matter as additional information develops.