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Leaders of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 700 say they have the support of the “Build a Better Marsh Coalition,” made up of Indiana customers and community members urging Indianapolis-based Marsh Supermarkets to allow a union election requested by employees at its Beech Grove store.
“The Build a Better Marsh Coalition is committed to civility and fairness in the community. I believe the election guidelines proposed by the coalition are extremely reasonable and I urge Marsh to agree to them,” UFCW Local 700 President Joe Chorpenning said in a statement. “I hope Marsh will stick to its Hoosier roots and respect that decision by allowing the election to proceed.”
Local 700 leaders previously said worker interest in unionizing began to rise at Marsh after Florida-based private equity group Sun Capital Partners acquired the grocery chain in 2006.
Last month, the union filed charged with the National Labor Relations Board, accusing the grocer of using illegal interrogation practices and unlawfully terminating a worker for attempting to organize a union.
In a statement released at the time, Marsh said company officials would “vigorously defend ourselves against these unfounded allegations by the UFCW. Marsh has successfully operated stores for 79 years in an environment where employee satisfaction, customer service and mutual respect are top priorities. We feel strongly that people need to understand the truth about our company.”
The charges followed attempts by Marsh workers to deliver a petition to March’s Indianapolis headquarters, which the union said asked executives to meet with them about “the future direction of the company.” The union said corporate security ordered the group off company property.
Established in 1931, Marsh operates about 100 stores in Indiana and Ohio.