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    Stop & Shop, Southern New England Workers Stave Off Strike

    QUINCY, Mass. -- Stop & Shop Supermarket Co. here has come to new bargaining agreements with its five New England UFCW locals, which represent 43,000 of the grocer's employees in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, thereby averting a strike at 231 stores in those states. Union members approved the new three-year contracts in meetings held Sunday.

    QUINCY, Mass. -- Stop & Shop Supermarket Co. here has come to new bargaining agreements with its five New England UFCW locals, which represent 43,000 of the grocer's employees in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, thereby averting a strike at 231 stores in those states. Union members approved the new three-year contracts in meetings held Sunday.

    The previous contracts expired Feb. 17.

    "We believe these new contracts meet our goal and provide significantly improved wages and benefits," Stop & Shop said in a statement.

    The retailer and the locals had begun negotiations in mid-December.

    Last month members of the UFCW's Local 1445, covering workers in eastern and central Massachusetts; Local 328, covering Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts; Local 1459, covering western Massachusetts; and locals 371 and 919, covering Connecticut, gave the union permission to call a strike if need be.

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