(June 13) The United Food and Commercial Workers Union has given Southern California's big three supermarket chains until June 21 to come up with a comprehensive contract proposal for 65,000 union workers who currently are working under a pact that was supposed to expire March 5, according to the Los Angeles Times.

If the chains fail to make a proposal by the deadline, the union will reportedly hold meetings with its members starting June 24 to ask them to vote on the proposal or to authorize a strike against Ralphs and Vons.

The union previously received authorization by workers to strike against Albertsons.

Some progress reportedly has been made on the issue of health insurance for "second-tier" workers hired after the last contract was approved in 2004.