Friday is the latest deadline set by Market Basket for employees who walked off the job at the company’s headquarters and warehouse to return to work, or risk losing their jobs. They’ve been protesting for four weeks, demanding the reinstatement of former CEO Arthur T. Demoulas.

This follows comments from Governor Deval Patrick on Wednesday, who spoke with the Board of Directors and with Arthur T, and said both sides are close to reaching a deal. He also said it’s within the power of protesting employees to stabilize the company by going back to work.

“I think it’s important for the workers to understand, for the associates to understand, that they can go right back to work and they would do a service to the people served by Market Basket,” he said. “Usually companies are able to buy and sell each other without workers walking off the job and saying they’re not going to work unless they get the boss of their choice.”

The company’s CEO’s also want signs related to the boycott from its stores. An e-mail is directing store managers to “remove all signs, posters… drawings that are not product or price related. Remove all ‘Boycot Market Basket’ signs, and remove items preventing deliveries.”

Will the latest demands work? Will employees go back to work while details of a sale agreement are hammered out? Share your comments below, and watch for them on WBZ News in the Morning from 4:30 to 7:00 a.m.

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