Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors Supports Good Jobs and Votes to Reject CleanPower for $3.4 Million Cleaning Contract

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 5, 2013

Contact:  Ivan Moreno | morenoi@seiu1.org | 773.799.6455

After Finance Committee Unanimously Rejects Irresponsible Contractor CleanPower…

Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors Supports Good Jobs and Votes to Reject CleanPower for $3.4 Million Cleaning Contract

Milwaukee, WI – Today, the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors voted to reject CleanPower for a $3.4 million cleaning contract, a proposal that was unanimously rejected by the Board’s Finance Committee last week. CleanPower is a company with a history of paying poverty wages and a track record of bad business practices, including alleged discrimination, labor law violations and safety complaints. Rejecting CleanPower for this multi-million dollar public contract demonstrates responsible use of taxpayers’ dollars and ensures that Milwaukee County creates good jobs for our communities.

“Being offered only part-time hours and poverty wages, I’m constantly forced to choose between putting food on the table and paying bills,” said CleanPower janitor Connie Sullivan. “I am glad that the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors is supporting good jobs that will allow working families to build a better life by saying no to irresponsible companies like CleanPower that push working families into poverty.”

While more than three of every four Milwaukee schoolchildren need free or reduced lunch during the school day, Milwaukee County needs good, family-sustaining jobs that will move our city forward. CleanPower is contributing to the cycle of poverty providing part-time, poverty wage jobs, forcing its employees to rely on taxpayer funded benefits programs to meet their basic needs.

“I work hard every day, but being forced into part-time work with poverty wages I can’t provide my family with a decent quality of life. I’m always struggling for more hours but still I can’t make ends meet,” said Calvin Robinson, a CleanPower janitor. “I am glad that our County Supervisors are supporting good jobs that will allow working families to build a better life.”

With an annual income as low as $8,500, CleanPower’s janitors are eligible for Wisconsin’s food assistance programs, public health benefits, and housing assistance. In fact, according to the state of Wisconsin, more than 300 of CleanPower’s Wisconsin employees and more than 500 of their children already rely on public benefits to obtain health care.

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

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