COLUMBUS – Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1 janitors who clean Columbus’ downtown buildings like those of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, Huntington Bancshares, American Electric Power, and JP Morgan Chase ratified a historic new union contract as part of their campaign for “One Columbus,” a city in which all working people—white, Black, and brown—can enjoy the benefits of downtown’s growth.
Under the three-year agreement covering 750 janitors, wages will increase on average by more than 13%, putting an additional $6,300.00 into the pockets of janitors over the life of the contract to help them support their families. In addition, janitors will receive a third week of vacation and additional benefits.
“With this contract, I will have a little something left over for myself and have a liveable income,” said Local 1 Janitor, Cristal Sylla. “Janitors stood together at the bargaining table, and we won the good raises we need.”
The victory comes after Local 1 Columbus janitors rallied downtown with community and elected allies to demand better work conditions and higher wages. As part of their One Columbus campaign, janitors fought for a pay increase and improved workplace standards as a way to ensure all Columbus residents and neighborhoods benefit from the city’s booming economic growth.
Yet their fight doesn’t end in Columbus. 600 Local 1 janitors in Cincinnati will soon kick off their own fight for a strong, new contract with a path to $15 and better benefits to ensure working families across the city can support themselves and strengthen their communities.