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M iT <br />IT <br />, <br />RAVO ICE FOR WORKING CALIFORNIA <br />12.January 2021 <br />To the Mayor and City Council in Santa Ana: <br />Andrea Zinder <br />President <br />Matt Bell <br />Secretary - Treasurer <br />On behalf of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 324, and our 20,000 members in <br />Los Angeles and Orange County, I am writing to express our support for Item number 2 on the January <br />121h Special City Council Meeting, which considers mandating hazard pay for Grocery and Drug retail <br />workers. <br />It has been made abundantly clear during this pandemic that our members play a critical role in <br />providing necessary food, supplies and medicine to an anxious public. This has taken an enormous toll <br />on our membership. Currently 2,063 of our members have been diagnosed with COVID-19, which <br />represents around 10.4% of our local. Workers live in dread that each shift could be the one where they <br />are exposed. Yet they go to work every day. <br />The industry has been shameful in acknowledging this risk. While quick to publicly laud themselves as <br />good employers in March by implementing a $2/hour "Hero Pay", they very quietly phased it out by <br />June. Despite a surge of cases in the summer, and an even worse surge in December, virtually none of <br />these employers reinstituted this pay. Some gave out gift cards for store credit, some did nothing at all. <br />The Grocery and Drug industry have reaped record profits, and yet it refuses to recognize the <br />importance of the employees that have made this possible. Therefore, it is imperative that the County <br />steps in to ensure a basic standard of fairness and reinstate a hazard pay for these essential workers. <br />We are grateful for the leadership of Mayor Sarmiento and Councilmember Phan on this issue. <br />Sincerely, <br />Derek Smith <br />Political Director <br />United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 324 <br />8530 Stanton Ave., P.O. Box 5004, Buena Park, CA 90622-5004 • (714) 995-4601 • (800) 244-UFCW • Fax (714) 995-8214 • <br />