ST. CLOUD - Workers and allies rallied Wednesday in support of Makaida Alexander, a SuperAmerica worker who they say has faced retaliation for leading a campaign for better wages and working conditions.
The event, at the SuperAmerica on Division St. in St. Cloud, was organized by the Greater Minnesota Worker Center, an organization working to eliminate poverty wages and to raise the standards of living in central Minnesota.
“SuperAmerica workers in St. Cloud and the Twin Cities have been conducting surveys of workers and organizing for better work conditions and wages,” the worker center said in a statement.
“Makaida Alexander has been the face and the voice of the St. Cloud-based Greater Minnesota Worker Center supported SuperAmerica campaign for fair scheduling, wages, and health and safety. She stood in solidarity with CTUL janitor strikers, spoke out at rallies about workers’ conditions at SuperAmerica and has spoken to the media.
“Ever since her appearance in the news Nov. 10, her hours have been drastically cut. The week following her speaking out at an early morning rally at an SA store in Minneapolis, she was scheduled for ZERO hours.
“Then she was forced to work the Thanksgiving Holiday overnight alone. She worked from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. alone in the store with no break, a violation of labor laws. She was afraid and called for help but no one would come. This is of special concern since she is a woman and around the country convenience store workers have begun to speak out and protest the dangers to workers assigned lone shifts overnight.
“For the last week she has been scheduled only four hours, and she only has four hours this week also. She usually is scheduled for between 20-24 hours per week. It appears that SA is trying to bully her into quitting.”
SuperAmerica workers and representatives of the Worker Center will meet Dec. 16 with SA President and CEO Jack Helmick at the company’s Woodbury headquarters. The meeting was scheduled after workers demonstrated and conducted a sit-in at the building’s lobby Nov. 17.
Organizers said they hope to bring Alexander’s case to Helmick’s attention, in addition to discussing other issues in the campaign.