By Robert Gates
Market Basket workers who abandon their job or refuse to work - after former CEO Arthur T. DeMoulas was not reinstated by a Thursday evening deadline - could be fired, according to the company’s co-CEOs.
In a letter from co-CEOs Felicia Thornton and James F. Gooch posted online by the Boston Globe, they told employees: “If you choose to abandon your job or refuse to perform your job requirements, you will leave us no choice but to permanently replace you.”
The 4:30 p.m. deadline on Thursday was set by workers in a letter to Thornton and Gooch, demanding that they want Arthur T. Demoulas reinstated “with full authority, non-negotiable.” Demoulas and two other top company officials were fired last month after control of the company’s board sided with Arthur T.’s cousin, Arthur S. Demoulas.
Arthur T. Demoulas was not reinstated before Thursday’s deadline, but the co-CEOs said they had passed along the demand by employees to the board chairman, who has set a telephone meeting of the board for Monday.
The co-CEOs said that since Arthur T. Demoulas has not been reinstated, it is an individual decision by each employee about whether they want to continue working at Market Basket, which has 71 stores in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island with a total of about 25,000 full and part-time employees. It is headquartered in Tewksbury, Mass.
“Any action is an individual choice and we hope that your top priority continues to be taking care of the Market Basket customer,” Thornton and Gooch’s letter said.Click here to see the complete letter from Thornton and Gooch to Market Basket employees.