(WGGB/WSHM) -- Wednesday marked the seventh day of the Stop and Shop strike.

Many are wondering how long can this last.

For Stop and Shop employees along the picket line, a simple beep speaks louder than words.

It was day seven of the strike and many customers are standing with the picket line - not only with hopes they reach a deal soon, but a fair deal.

However, what if they don't?

"The members are prepared to stay out as long as it takes," said Dean Eithier with UFCW.

Either told Western Mass News that the Local 1459 United Food and Commercial Workers union (UFCW) has 1,400 members and each is staying strong.

"So we are still far away, to be honest with you, but we are going to win this. They are sacrificing family time, bills, they are asking me about the health insurance that runs out at the end of the month and Stop and Shop doesn't seem to care," Eithier noted.

The union is not happy with Stop and Shop's newest offer.

"Last offer is something I wouldn't think about sharing with anyone because it's an insult to our members," Eithier said.

The latest proposal on the table, according to Stop and Shop, includes

  • Paying least 92 percent of health premiums
  • Keeping the defined benefit pension for all associates
  • Pay increase for all associates

The proposal also includes no change to Sunday time-and-a-half premiums, but only for full-time employees.

"It seems like the statement they put out isn't the full statement. It seems like it's only for full-time employees," said one customer, who didn't want to be identified.

However, Stop and Shop wants customers to know they are working hard to find a solution as soon as possible.

In a statement addressed to customers, Stop and Shop President Mark McGowan said, in part, "We are committed to resolving our labor negotiations as quickly as possible so that our employees can return to their jobs and we can get back to better serving you and the community."

However, as for now, the strike continues.

Copyright 2019 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

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