CVS Walgreens three-day walkout

Pharmacists at CVS and Walgreens Plan Three-Day Walkout, Demand Improved Working Conditions

Thousands of employees at CVS Health Corp and Walgreens Boots Alliance’s US pharmacies are gearing up for a three-day walkout set to commence on Monday, as they rally for enhanced working conditions and increased recruitment efforts within their companies. This strike, dubbed “Pharmageddon” by organizers, signifies the third significant labor action taken by pharmacists in recent weeks. In September, CVS staff in Kansas City staged a two-day strike, followed by Walgreens store employees walking out earlier this month.

Shane Jerominski, a former Walgreens pharmacist and a lead organizer of the upcoming walkout, expressed concerns to Reuters about some stores being “grossly understaffed.” This staffing shortage, he explained, stems from the overwhelming volume of prescriptions and immunization appointments that pharmacists are expected to manage. Employees are also advocating for improved pay and more consistent hours for technicians, who play a crucial role in locating, dispensing, packing, and labeling medicines for patients.

A spokesperson for CVS affirmed that company leaders are actively engaging in direct discussions with pharmacists to address their concerns and have established a two-way dialogue. Meanwhile, Walgreens stated that it has taken measures to assist its pharmacy teams in negotiating improved employment terms. The spokesperson from Walgreens additionally mentioned the opening of their 11th micro fulfillment center, designed to process prescriptions separate from the main store area. This innovation aims to allocate more time for staff to interact with customers and offer additional health-related products and services.

The three-day walkout by CVS and Walgreens employees aligns with a broader trend of labor unrest witnessed across various industries, including auto workers, writers, actors, and most notably, the recent extensive medical worker strike led by Kaiser Permanente employees earlier this month. The outcome of these collective strikes remains uncertain, but they undeniably signify a growing willingness among employees to advocate for their rights.
Source: Reuters

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