UFCW creates ‘super local’ of 60,000

Larger locals 'way of future,' says CAW
By Danielle Harder
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 08/15/2011

Two United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) locals in Ontario have combined to create what is believed to be North America’s largest local union. Together, Locals 175 and 1977 will represent 60,000 workers, many of them employed by grocery giant Loblaw.

“It’s becoming more and more important,” said UFCW Canada director Wayne Hanley of the move towards “super locals” as unions struggle with declining membership, aggressive employers and continuing economic turmoil. “If we pool our resources, we can give better service.”

It’s not UFCW’s first foray into large-scale amalgamation. In Saskatchewan, the union has merged several smaller locals into Local 1400, which now represents 6,000 members across the province.