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UFCW LOCAL 536 - a VOICE for Working Central Illinois

Union Office will remain open

The UFCW Local 536 offices will remain open and will be operating on a normal schedule. Your Union will continue to address all safety concerns. If you see a safety concern or have a suggestion please call the the Union office at 309-686-0304.

Local 536 sends letter to Government Officials

On March 17, 2020 President Parker of UFCW Local 536 sent letters to the Governor of Illinois, to area US Representatives, and Illinois US Senators to recognize retail grocery workers along with food processing and nursing home workers as front line workers and to guarantee workers receive at least two weeks of paid leave.

Updates on Employer actions concerning COVID-19

  • Future updates of importance will now be posted on the UFCW Local 536 Facebook page and sent to Members directly by text message.

Kroger: has announced that any employee with a verified COVID-19 diagnosis will receive two weeks of pay while recovering. Kroger has also expressed to the Union that they will work with employees that have child care needs because of school closings. https://www.grocerydive.com/news/kroger-adjusts-employee-policies-as-two-associates-test-positive-for-covid-/574193/

3-20-10 Update on Kroger- The Union has been in contact with Kroger (as well as several other Employers) concerning safety issues. On March 20, 2020 Local 536 requested that screens be put up to help employees in regards to safety. On that same day Kroger announced that they will be putting up these screens. There has also been discussions with Kroger about hand sanitizer shortage. Our Union has been informed that as soon as additional sanitizer arrives that it will be distributed to those store experiencing a shortage . During this time we have been informed that Kroger is allowing additional time to do additional hand washing. Additionally, we have been told that as soon as masks are available that Kroger will be making these available as well.

Updated benefits from Kroger relayed to Union and our Members

Appreciation Pay

As a thank you for bringing Our Purpose – to Feed the Human Spirit – to life for our customers and our country, we are offering frontline grocery, supply chain, manufacturing and customer service associates a one-time payment of $300 for full-time and $150 for part-time. Associates who were working for the company on or before March 1, 2020 are eligible. This appreciation pay will be paid out on April 3.

Expanded Emergency Leave Guidelines

Last week, we introduced new COVID-19 Emergency Leave Guidelines, allowing paid time off for associates diagnosed with COVID-19 and for associates placed under mandatory quarantine by their medical provider or by a public health authority because of exposure to COVID-19.

Effective immediately we will expand those guidelines to also cover COVID-19 related self-isolation and symptoms as verified by an appropriate health care professional. All eligible associates will receive their standard pay for up to two weeks (14 days).

Our managers will work with you on a case by case basis with the application of general attendance policies, knowing that we must be flexible during this time. If associates are unable to return to work after 14 days, additional paid time off may be available through a short-term disability (STD) benefit.

Schnucks: has announced to the Union that they will work with employees that have child care needs. Schnucks has also informed the Union that they are working on developing policies as it relates to employees becoming ill.

3-20-20- Update- On March 20, 2020 Local 536 requested that screens be put up to help employees in regards to safety. That same day your Union was notified that Schnucks is intensely exploring the installation of plexiglass shielding at various points around the store such as check lanes and the deli counters. Schnucks also announced that they have developed a policy concerning compensation should our Members have a confirmed Covid-19 and those who have been quarantined.

Update from Schnucks to Local 536

(1) Teammate Safety.  Schnucks began installing temporary plexiglass panels at our checklanes, pharmacy counters, deli counters, and other operating service counters this morning.  Installation is scheduled to be completed at all of our stores by Monday, March 30th.  In addition, Schnucks will be playing a message repeatedly throughout the day on every store PA system reminding customers to social distance from each other and our teammates.  The audio message will be playing in all stores no later than tomorrow.  Since the middle of last week, there have been large signs put up as you enter the stores reminding customers to social distance while in the store.

(2) Teammate Bonus.  Schnucks announced internally today that in appreciation for all of the hard work and dedication displayed by our teammates, Schnucks will be issuing a special bonus payment to all store teammates on April 1st, including hourly-paid Full-Time and Part-Time store teammates, Bakery Plant teammates, and Floral Design Center teammates. To be eligible, teammates must have been hired on or before March 1, 2020. Details will be shared with teammates by their store or facility managers starting today. Full time hourly store teammates will receive $500, part time hourly store teammates will receive $250, Bakery Plant teammates will receive $100, full time Floral Design Center teammates will receive $250, and part time Floral Design Center teammates will receive $100.

(3) Meals for Teammates. We are also taking steps to ensure that, as teammates work especially hard in our stores, they can easily refuel and reenergize. We are working with a number of restaurants to provide no cost in-store catering several days a week so that our teammates don’t have to worry about getting a bite to eat.

Sharon Health Care: has expressed to the Union that should any employee become ill that the Company will work with the Union on a case by case basis to address the situation.

Aramark: Update on 3-23-20

• Employees working at an active location (including active Aramark Uniform Services offices, market centers, and depots), who are diagnosed with COVID-19 or whom a medical professional or public health authority requires or recommends be quarantined based on their individual diagnosis or symptoms, will be eligible for up to 21 days of additional paid sick time above an employees’ currently accrued sick time.  The employee will need to first use any accrued sick time.  These 21 additional sick days are inclusive of and not incremental to any sick time mandated by a new law, regulation, or order related to COVID-19.   

Employees requesting COVID-19 sick time will need to complete and submit a form documenting the diagnosis or quarantine order (more details will be coming soon) and requesting the additional COVID-19 sick time.  Please note that 21 days is the maximum additional time that will be permitted for COVID-19 related diagnoses and quarantines.  Based on current CDC guidance, most employees will not need to utilize the full 21 days.  These 21 additional days are available through June 30, 2020.

• We will extend company-paid medical benefits coverage through June 30, 2020 for employees enrolled in Aramark Uniform Services medical plans who are dealing with reduced hours or layoff related to the COVID-19 outbreak.  Telehealth services will also be provided free of charge to employees enrolled in Aramark Uniform Services medical benefit plans.

• For Taft Hartley medical benefit plans where the trustees have not voted to extend health benefits, we will continue to submit contributions to the plan to extend medical benefits coverage through June 30, 2020, for employees enrolled in those Taft Hartley medical plans who are dealing with reduced hours or layoff related to the COVID-19 outbreak.

• Additionally, absences under the following circumstances will not be treated as an occurrence under our attendance policies, through June 30, 2020:

  • Anyone infected with COVID-19
  • Anyone with a family member they care for who is infected
  • Anyone that a doctor has quarantined and that Aramark Uniform Services has required to be quarantined           

• Finally, our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is available to all employees and their families at no cost.  It provides helpful tools for managing anxiety and fears, including support to help employees explain this complex situation to their children.

Aramark Uniform Services will also continue to follow the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the World Health Organization.  To that end, the measures that we have already taken include the following:

• Using appropriate cleaning products and procedures, including standard cleaning and disinfection practices

• Routine and thorough environmental cleaning and disinfection with special attention to frequently touched surfaces

• Providing instructions on how to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and additional communications and signage on proper handwashing techniques and personal hygiene

Sodexo: has announced that the will compensate employees up to 21 days if confirmed with COVID-19 after exhausting sick days.

Update: The Union has been made aware that Eureka College continued its extension of spring break and that some of our Members are temporarily out of employment while other based on seniority are working limited hours. This Contract already has provisions in place for this circumstance and the temporary closing language will apply. We have also been informed that payout out of vacation will be available.

JewelUpdate on 3-23-20


  • Please note that the official company responses will control and any inaccuracies will be corrected as soon as the Union is notified. This is for informational purposes only and is in no way a guarantee to additional benefits.
  • The Union will update this section when additional information becomes available.
  • If you do not see your employer listed here, it is because we have not received adequate information to post at this time and the Union will continue to reach out to these Employers for information.

Message to the Public and Press COVID-19

All over Central Illinois, our grocery, retail, and healthcare union members are on the frontlines of this public health crisis. As we witness the demand for food and healthcare reach unprecedented levels, our hard-working men and women are working tirelessly to meet the needs of the community they love and call home. We want to thank the customers and people we serve for their incredible support and are asking everyone to please be patient and understanding as we work through this local and national emergency. By standing together, we can and will overcome the challenges no matter what lies ahead.


Marc Parker- President-UFCW Local 536

4th Quarterly Meeting Notice

The 4th quarterly meeting for UFCW Local 536 have been scheduled for:

Peoria Area: Thursday, December 19, 2019 at the UFCW Hall located at 101 Grant Rd. Marquette Heights, IL. Meeting starts at 5:00 PM.

Springfield, Lincoln, Decatur and Bloomington/Normal Areas: Wednesday, December 18, 2019 at the Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 99 located at 406 South Eldorado Road Bloomington, IL. Meeting starts at 5:00 PM.