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Stop & Shop Employees Return To Work After Strike Ends

BOSTON (CBS) – Stop and Shop employees got back to work Monday morning. Both sides have reached a tentative contract agreement, putting an end to the 11-day strike.

The first order of business was restocking the shelves after workers walked the picket lines for more than a week.

Sunday night Stop and Shop and the unions announced that they reached a tentative agreement. Thirty-one thousand workers in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut walked off the job on April 11.

"I'm glad," one customer in Boston said. "I hope they got what they wanted and you know, more convenient for me."

During the strike they got support from community members and big name politicians like Sen. Elizabeth Warren and former Vice President Joe Biden.

UFCW Locals 328, 371, 919, 1445, and 1459 called it a "powerful victory." The unions released a statement which says in part:

The agreement preserves health care and retirement benefits, provides wage increases, and maintains time-and-a-half pay on Sunday for current members.

"I've never felt so good on a Monday morning in my life," said Anthony Pedriali, a Quincy Stop & Shop employee.

Employees said they don't know the details of the deal, but have confidence in their union presidents.

"Thank God it's over. everybody wanted to get back to work. Just glad it's over and we got a fair deal the way it seems," said Quincy employee Paul Ditocco. "There's going to be a lot of clean up. No product, shelves are empty."

Retail expert Ken Morris of Boston Retail Partners Principal says some customers may never return.

"When you have a good customer moment it's great, when you have a bad customer moment, you tend not to shop as frequently at that location," Morris said. "You get a chance to look at competitors, and perhaps you'll go to someone else going forward."

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