UFCW (United Food and Commercial Workers Union) Local 1400 has been in existence since 1979, with a history (nationally) of mergers with other labour organizations reaching back more than a century.
UFCW is one of the largest, most dynamic, fastest-growing and most respected unions in the world. There are 1.4 million members across North America standing together to improve the lives and livelihoods of workers, families, and communities. In Canada, UFCW is one of Canada’s largest unions and represents more than 240,000 workers from St. John’s to Victoria; across the Province of Saskatchewan Local 1400 represents over 6,000 members.
Our members are employed mainly in retail food stores, food processing and production, but as one of the most progressive and fastest-growing unions in North America, UFCW Canada members can be found working in virtually every type of workplace and providing just about any type of service you can imagine.
The main purpose of the UFCW is to obtain collectively bargained rights and benefits for its members and to ensure the terms of Collective Bargaining Agreements, or contracts, are enforced. This is accomplished chiefly at the local union level, and the UFCW National office provides assistance to the locals in negotiating, organizing, etc.
UFCW Canada’s National Office is situated in Rexdale, Ontario. Other services provided by the National Office include research on corporate background and legislative issues, political action, programs on women’s concerns, education and training support and specialized local union services to assist them in representing members.
In addition to National office assistance, National Staff Representatives work out of office space provided by UFCW Locals in every province. National Reps perform a number of important front-line duties, including organizing, collective bargaining and political action.
There are nearly 100 different “Locals” across Canada and many more in the United States. Each Local represents members in certain geographic regions and in various different sectors of our workforce. They can all vary greatly in size – a single workplace local may only have a handful of members or all the way up to the largest UFCW Local Union having more than 45,000 members and a province-wide jurisdiction encompassing hundreds of workplaces.
The President of the Local is also the Chief Executive Officer; in addition, there is a Secretary-Treasurer, a Recorder, and three or more Vice-Presidents (in Local 1400’s case, there are eleven). In some Locals, the President and other members may be rank-and-file members, while in others (Local 1400 for example) the jobs are full-time, salaried positions.
The UFCW National Training Programme (UFCW NTP) coordinates the efforts of Locals that provide skills training for members. Training ranges from hands-on skills for job upgrades, computer courses and health and safety issues. An initial goal of the UFCW NTP has been to establish at least one UFCW Education and Training Centre in every province. In Saskatchewan, Local 1400’s office and the Saskatchewan UFCW Training and Education Centre share the same building.
In addition to the variety of charitable works and contributions by the UFCW and its members, our union has chosen the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada (formerly the Leukemia Research Fund of Canada) as our official charity.