Local workers protest at Pekin Kroger

By WEEK Reporter

February 22, 2014 Updated Feb 23, 2014 at 12:04 AM CDT

PEKIN, Ill. -- More than a hundred West Central Building Trades members gathered outside Pekin's Kroger on broadway in protest.

Union members are unsatisfied with Kroger's decision to hire an out-of-town general contractor to remodel the store. Kroger chose M & J General Contractors--an Elgin based company--to take on this $5 million project.

"We shop in this store. Our prescription drugs are at this store, and the people who they've hired take their dollars out of town," said Pekin electrician Paul Flynn.

"For every $7 made within our community, $6 stays here in our community and $1 leaves. If you have an out of town contractor like M& J it's a reverse cycle. Only $1 stays in this community and the other $6 is leaving," said Pekin carpenter Gene Sanders.

Kroger representatives say they decide on who to hire based on quality, availability and price. Representatives say more than half of the subcontractors they have hired are local.

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