SEIU Local 1 Calls on Mayor Emanuel to Void the United Maintenance Contract

Contact:          Leslie Mendoza Kamstra, 773-896-7815, mendozal@seiu1.org

United Maintenance violated terms of city contract, hiding investors…

SEIU Local 1 calls for City to void O’Hare cleaning contract that cost hundreds of Chicago workers their jobs

Chicago—SEIU Local 1 called on Mayor Emanuel to immediately terminate the O’Hare cleaning contract with United Maintenance and rebid it. Today’s report from the Chicago Sun-Times makes it clear that United Maintenance violated city requirements by withholding critical information about his company during the contract bid process.

Richard Simon sold 50 percent of his company in December 2011. Over the course of the entire next year he neglected to inform the city of the change in ownership, as required by law, until after he was assured he was awarded the $100 million contract.

“This is a serious deception and a violation of the city’s contract requirements that should result in a termination of the contract with United Maintenance,” said SEIU Local 1 President Tom Balanoff. “We believe this incident is serious enough to warrant a criminal investigation and we call on both City Inspector General Ferguson and Cook County State’s Attorney Alvarez to immediately launch an investigation into this matter.”

United Maintenance has violated the city’s terms for contractors by neglecting to disclose its ownership until after the acquiring the lucrative city contract. This is a company with reported ties to organized crime that has cut wages at O’Hare and cost hundreds of Chicago workers their jobs—sending hundreds more to the unemployment lines and forcing more families onto public assistance.

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SEIU Local 1 unites 50,000 property service workers in the central United States, including janitors, security officers and residential doormen. Together we work to build strength for all working people, on the job and in our communities.

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