Stop & Shop and UFCW, Local 919
A store can discharge a worker who previously received warnings about insubordinate conduct and who allegedly uses profanity in front of customers and co-workers, in violation of corporate policy. In 2008, Stop & Shop hired Carlinton Clarke, and he became a member of the supermarket's night crew, responsible for stocking shelves with merchandise between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. Allegedly, Clarke's supervisor questioned Clarke about his work performance on March 22, 2012, and Clarke responded, "Say it again" and approached within inches of his supervisor's face. Clarke refused his supervisor's request to leave the premises. Clarke's supervisor called the store manager, and she allegedly heard Clarke call the supervisor a "motherfu----" in an area where customers and co-workers were present. Afterward, Clarke admitted that he had a confrontation with his supervisor. Clarke denied that he himself used any profanity and claimed that his supervisor called Clarke a "motherfu----." Clarke previously had received warnings for insubordinate conduct and had been informed that similar conduct in the future could result in discharge. The employer discharged Clarke for insubordination, and the union filed a grievance. The majority of arbitrators credited the testimony of the store manager and Clarke's supervisor that Clarke violated the employer's workplace policy and used profanity in front of customers and co-workers. Arbitrators voted, 2-1, to deny the grievance. Mark Reiss represented the company. J. William Gagne represented the union.