Some 30,000 Loblaw workers in Ontario are set to strike if a new labour settlement is not reached by early October.

The United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) has been in negotiations with the Canadian grocer since April and said on Saturday (11 September) that four days of talks between the two parties wound up with some progress on key issues but no settlement in the prolonged negotiations.

UFCW local unions 1977, 1000A and 175 & 633 said there are still major issues that need to be resolved if a strike is to be avoided and that if no agreement is reached by 8 October, workers will go on strike.

The union will meet again with management the week of 27 September to 2 October and the province has assigned a mediator to help with negotations.

In August, the union claimed that after the last set of negotiations in July that Loblaw, operator of the Loblaws, No Frills, Zehrs, Real Canadian Superstores, Great Food and Fortinos banners, is proposing to cut wages by up to 25%, reduce full-time jobs and impose availability rules on part-time workers that would make it very difficult for them to hold another part-time job or even, in the case of students, attend school.

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