Stop & Shop and the union representing workers in the New York area have agreed to a federal mediator’s request for a seven-day cooling off period.
The United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1500 had called meetings on Sunday to prepare members in case of a strike or a lockout of employees by the company this week, the union said.
While both the union and Stop & Shop, which is owned by Dutch supermarket giant Ahold, agreed to contract extensions, those expired on Nov. 3. Since then, about 6,000 workers represented by the union have been working without a contract. About 3,000 members work on Long Island. Members voted in October to give leaders the authority to call a strike, a move that provides more leverage for their negotiators.
Federal mediators stepped in last week, as both union representatives and Stop & Shop officials grappled with complexities raised by the Affordable Care Act.
Union officials hope the temporary truce eventually will lead to an acceptable agreement, they said.