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    PriceRite Workers Want to Start Union

    Employees of the Wakefern-owned banner claim the company is blocking their efforts to unionize.

    To show support for workers at Wakefern Food Corp.-owned PriceRite who want to join a union like many of the employees of the co-op's ShopRite banner stores, members of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW), grocery workers, and community members are expected to gather today at a PriceRite store in Providence, R.I. to hand out fliers to customers and speak with them about unionization.

    UFCW spokeswoman Amber Sparks said PriceRite workers have been experiencing "company interference" in their efforts to join a union. The activists, she said, are trying to put community pressure on Wakefern to discontinue such alleged practices as showing anti-union films at orientation sessions for new employees, sending out letters to employees warning against the dangers of joining unions, and disseminating anti-union literature to workers.

    ShopRite officials were not available yesterday to comment on the union supporters' claims.

    UFCW represents over 1 million members working in the retail grocery industry, as well as workers in the meatpacking, poultry, food-processing, health care, distillery, retail and other industries.

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