NEW YORK, Sept. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Workers at Health Now, Inc./Dr. Rico Perez Products, Inc., a 10-store vitamin chain located in New York and New Jersey, voted overwhelmingly to join the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union/UFCW.
New York and New Jersey employees of the Florida-based chain are anxious to address a number of issues including the lack of treatment with dignity and respect, and the lack of medical coverage, regular wage increases, job security, and adequate health and safety on the job. Their drive to unionize got an added push when the owner boasted on his weekly show on a local radio station that workers in the chain's Florida stores have full medical coverage. The workers in the New York and New Jersey stores do not have medical coverage.
The New York and New Jersey workers decided the best way to address their issues was to join the area's retail union -- the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union.
Immediately a petition was filed with the National Labor Relations Board. One month later, on September 15, Health Now employees voted 27-1 in favor of representation by the RWDSU despite an intense anti-union campaign mounted by the employer. In fact, as a result of the employer's use of fear tactics, intimidation, and threats in an effort to defeat the employees' drive to unionize, the RWDSU has filed unfair labor practice charges with the National Labor Relations Board. After the workers voted overwhelmingly to unionize the employer threatened to close his New York and New Jersey stores rather than deal with the union.
"Many retail workers are caught in a downward spiral of low wages, poor benefits, harassment and exploitation at work. A union contract is the best solution and through community-labor partnerships the RWDSU is working with employees and their communities to fight for social and economic justice and workers' right to the protection a union contract gives," said Stuart Appelbaum, President of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union/ UFCW.
The Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union/UFCW represents 100,000 workers throughout the U.S. and Canada, including approximately 45,000 workers in New York.
Source: Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union