Safeway: Premium Pay for 3,000+ UFCW 1518 members!

Last week, we were pleased to see Sobeys decision to provide employees with top-ups on EI claims relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. Today, Sobeys has made another important move in the right direction by announcing their ‘Hero Pay Program.’ This program will provide our Safeway members with one of the strongest premium pay packages in the province, retroactive to March 8, 2020.

“We’re happy to see the vital role of our grocery store and pharmacy workers be recognized during this crisis,” says UFCW 1518 President Kim Novak. “It is important that in addition to access to paid leave, Sobeys is providing additional compensation to our members for the hard work they are doing on the front lines of this pandemic to keep our communities supplied.”

UFCW 1518 continues advocate for our members and encourages all retailers in British Columbia to continue making improvements for workers and to recognize the hard work of their staff on front lines.

The premium pay program in BC will apply to both store and pharmacy employees in all Safeway and Safeway Extra stores. In addition, franchisees like FreshCo have been strongly encouraged to adopt the program. UFCW 1518 will be following up with franchise units on this matter.

Here’s a breakdown of what the program looks like:

Store & Pharmacy Employees

Non-Management Premium Amounts
  • $50 per week premium, in addition to any hours worked during a week
  • Additional $2.00 per hour, for hours worked above 20 hours a week

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to speak to a union representative at or 1.800.661.3708.