Community groups file injunction to stop Kroger store closings

Photo: John Haas

May 5 — Today community and social-justice organizations held a news conference announcing the filing of an injunction to stop the closing of Kroger-owned grocery stores in Los Angeles County. The coalition is first trying to stop the closure of the Ralphs in South Central on Crenshaw and Slauson. 

The Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Southern California is the plaintiff in the filed complaint. 

“Kroger, the largest grocery chain in the U.S., made $2.8 billion in profit during the pandemic off the labor of workers who risked exposure to COVID-19. Many got sick. But because they were forced to pay a temporary increase of $5 per hour to their essential workers, the corporate giant decided to abandon them and communities already suffering from a lack of quality grocery stores,” explained John Parker of the Harriet Tubman Center for Social Justice.

“We are demanding that the courts and politicians finally take this assault on the workers and community by Kroger seriously,” Parker said. “Black and Brown communities already suffer from food deserts and these closings have a disproportionately negative effect on them. 

“We’re not having it,” said Parker. “The community will do whatever is necessary to fight the reckless and irresponsible acts of a giant whose profits and existence come from the workers’ labor and community’s support. That store has already been bought and paid for time and again by such support, and therefore rightfully belongs to the community and the workers. 

“Whose store? Our store!” he concluded.