CHICAGO – The following is a statement from SEIU Local 1 spokesman Nick Desideri in response to Susana Mendoza mentor Ed Burke being hit with allegations of political interference by ex-aviation commissioner Ginger Evans. Evans alleged that Burke pressured her to renew a $110 million airport cleaning contract for notorious Burke associate and Mendoza donor Richard Simon of United Maintenance. Both Bill Daley and Gery Chico returned donations from Simon, in 2013 and 2010 respectively.
“Richard Simon of United Maintenance was considered the prime suspect in the disappearance and alleged murder of a Chicago woman by the FBI, settled a nearly $1 million class-action wage theft lawsuit with airport janitors, has been the target of a patronage investigation by the Chicago Inspector General and was kicked out of Rivers Casino after an investigation by the Illinois Gaming Board.
“Despite this troubling history, Susana Mendoza accepted at least $1,000 from Simon in 2016. SEIU Local 1 urged Mendoza to return the contribution after warning her about Simon’s alleged ties to organized crime and record of hurting working people. She refused to do so.
“Mendoza claims to be a reformer and a fighter for working families. Her refusal to return this tainted donation from an alleged mob associate shows that she is neither.”