Boycott Watch  
November 24, Thanksgiving Day, 2011
Rite-Aid Strike & Boycott Ends - Union Lost, Just as Boycott Watch Predicted
Summary: Boycott Watch hopes you have a better and brighter Thanksgiving.
   After ten months, the union employee strike and boycott against Rite-Aid stores in Cleveland, Ohio ended, and although neither side would disclose the details, Boycott Watch has learned that the new union contract offers less than the strikers had before their strike began.

   At the heart of the demands were better health benefits, none of which the union won. Most significantly, after just a few months of picketing, the vast majority of the strikers had moved on to different jobs, leaving union retirees and others to picket for them. I quickly became clear that union members had lost far more in wages than they could possibly make back, thus the strike was a failure.
Rite Aid striker
   The strike ended as a last-ditch effort by the union to save itself as representing workers at Rite-Aid. After all, none of their actual striking members were picketing after six, and since the union wont disclose the numbers, there was no way of knowing if any of the original picketers were still paying union dues by working at other union shops.

   With no dues from the non-salaries of the Rite-Aid strikers, the union had to be losing money considering the few and low paying union jobs at the retailer the represented at the onset of the strike. The union, therefore, had no choice but to settle with Rite-Aid at a loss if it wanted to stay relevant.

   In our article 'Rite Aid Pharmacy Employees Strike, Boycott Themselves' ( on March 22, 2011, Boycott Watch stated: "Rite Aid has been in financial pain, it is not only the wrong time to demand more from the retailer, but it also puts the striking stores at the top of the stores to close list - Unions may win concessions in a contract negotiations, but if the company can't afford it, the company may close the stores, eliminating the union jobs."

   As usual we were right when it comes to boycotts. Rite-Aid has been losing money and rather than working with Rite-Aid to make the company more financially viable, the strikers ended up forcing the company to close the stores they worked at. While unions like to say they partner with management, in this case the unions worked against the benefit of both management and their own members.

   Boycott Watch is not taking sides in the management-union battle, but shame on the unions for eliminating the jobs of the hard-working people who paid them to represent and support their best interests. On this Thanksgiving Day, many hard working Americans are out of work, struggling to pay their bills, and in this case the union is squarely to blame.

   Boycott Watch hopes these workers, and the rest of America for that matter, are moving toward a brighter tomorrow and wishes everyone a happy Thanksgiving.


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