Instacart dismisses any employee who has voted for a merger, Motherboard reports. The news comes when the company closes stores in some grocery stores amid a coronavirus pandemic and doubles pickups.
The layoffs affect 10 union employees at a grocery store called Mariano’s, in addition to other Instacart employees. The group in Skoki, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, voted to merge last year with the United Food and Trade Association 1546 (UFCW). It was a remarkable victory for concert workers and was “the first time that employees of technology companies, which rely mainly on contract labor, have formed a collective bargaining union for better wages, benefits and working conditions,”
Employees were in the process of negotiating their first contract when news of the layoffs surfaced. “These layoffs are completely discouraging for all workers who are trying to do something to improve these jobs,” said one union worker. Motherboard. They said they were fighting for health insurance and rest time in their original contract.
The UFCW said Motherboard the layoffs will affect nearly 2,000 of the company’s 10,000 grocery store workers.
The news could have a chilling effect on other organizing efforts by Instacart employees across the country. The company’s management has already shown hostility to the organizers by running a union failure campaign that involved attracting managers to the Skokie grocery store to persuade workers to vote against the union.
Although the pandemic has changed the company’s shopping pattern in the store, it has also led to a significant increase in demand for groceries. This year, Instacart plans to go public, an event that could value the company at about $ 30 billion.
The company announced the cuts in a blog post about new grocery collection models. Instacart said it would transfer some of the affected shoppers to other grocery stores and provide “transition assistance” to jobseekers. “We know this is an extremely challenging time for many as we go through the COVID-19 crisis, and we are doing our best to support shoppers through this transition,” the blog post said.
According to Motherboard, workers could receive only $ 250 in compensation.
Instacart would not say On the edge whether union employees will be among those transferred. The cuts are expected to take place between March and June, according to Motherboard.
In a statement by email to On the edge, a spokesman for Instacart wrote:
As a result of the transition of some grocers to a partner selection model, we will complete our operations in the stores of selected trading venues in the coming months. We know that this is an extremely challenging time for many as we go through the COVID-19 crisis, and we are doing our best to support shoppers in this transition. This includes transferring affected buyers to other outlets where we have open buyer roles in the Instacart store, working closely with our retail partners to hire affected buyers for roles they want to fill, and providing buyers with help with the transition while exploring new job opportunities. We also provide all affected buyers with split packages based on their mandate with Instacart.
The statement was extracted directly from the company’s public blog post.