Not too long ago, getting a job at a major supermarket was an entry into the middle class. Most workers worked full-time. A job in the grocery industry meant that one could make ends meet, afford decent housing, provide adequate meals for one’s family, even take a vacation and save some money for a rainy day. That is no longer the case, as this report documents.
The largest independent survey of retail workers that has ever been conducted in the United States provides the foundation for this report. It was carried out at the request of United Food and Commercial Workers locals 7, 21, 324, and 770 to provide reliable, evidence-based analysis about the working and living conditions of Kroger workers.
Three regions with 36,795 Kroger workers were surveyed: The Puget Sound region of Washington, the State of Colorado, and Southern California. Completed surveys were received from 10,287 workers for a 28 percent response rate.
The living and working conditions of Kroger workers have declined markedly over the past 20 years. Kroger’s current low-wage, part-time workforce strategy relies on poorly-paid, part-time workers with constantly changing schedules.