UFCW 770 members Christie Sasaki (Pavilions), Priscilla Trinidad (Vons), and Marilyn Gonzalez (Rite Aid) shared their powerful first hand encounters with workplace violence at a Workplace Violence Prevention Hearing held by the California Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board.
These workers urged the Cal-OSHS Board members to support them and their fellow retail workers to have workplace safety standards in general industry to protect customers and employees from workplace violence.
“Workers like myself must be protected because workplace violence affects all essential grocery store and retail workers. According to OSHA, each year, nearly 2 million American workers are victims of workplace violence. Workplace violence is the second leading cause of fatal occupational injuries in the United States. And hate crimes have quadrupled at grocery stores since 2010, making them a hotbed for racism and workplace violence,” said Priscilla Trinidad, a West Los Angeles Vons worker.
“On a daily basis, we have some customers verbally abusing employees and people stealing at my store. Many times we have shoplifters who are very aggressive,” said Christie Sasaki, a Front End Supervisor at Beverly Hills Pavilions who spoke about an incident when a thief threatened her and a co-worker after stealing liquor.
“I call on the Occupational, Safety and Health Standards Board members to support me and all retail workers to have workplace safety standards in place that protect us and prevent us from becoming another statistic,” said Marilyn Gonzalez, a Shift Supervisor at a Los Angeles Rite Aid.