Some customers pitched in Saturday to help workers in Biddeford protest the ouster of Market Basket’s former president, an assistant store manager said.
Dan Lassiter said customers picked up protest signs calling for the rehiring of Arthur T. Demoulas and carried the protest to nearby Route 111. Others signed petitions, vowing not to shop at the store until the executive is reinstated, Lassiter said.
Demoulas was fired last month as part of a family feud on the board of the grocery chain. Many store employees say that Demoulas cared about their welfare, protected their pay and benefits and kept prices low at the chain’s stores. They say they worry that those benefits are in jeopardy and the company could be sold now that control has shifted to a separate group of family members on the board.
The board said Demoulas was overspending and not following board directives. The chain’s two new top executives have said that workers who don’t show up for work will be fired.
Lassiter said the Biddeford Market Basket – the only one in Maine – is getting only about half the deliveries it normally receives because the company’s warehouse in Massachusetts is the focus of many of the protests. Many customers, he said, are staying away in support of the employees.
“I think I have more money in my bank account than we did in business today,” he said Saturday.