Janitorial

750 Columbus Janitors Win a Historic New Contract With Better Benefits and A Total New Income of $ 4.8 Million into the Local Economy

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.

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SEIU Local 1 Janitors Launch Inspiring ‘One Columbus’ Campaign to Fight for Better Pay and Dignity on the Job

Joined by Columbus Councilmember Liz Brown and a Swelling of Labor and Community Allies from across Ohio…

SEIU Local 1 Janitors Launch Inspiring ‘One Columbus’ Campaign to Fight for Better Pay and Dignity on the Job

Janitors kick off campaign to secure path to $15 hourly wage, union rights for all working people in Columbus

COLUMBUS – Joined by City of Columbus Councilmember Liz Brown and dozens of labor and community allies from across Ohio, SEIU Local 1 janitors rallied Monday afternoon in the Nationwide Arena District to launch their fight for a strong new contract with a path to $15 and better benefits.

“Janitors like me work hard—day in and day out—keeping Columbus clean and running smoothly. Our skilled labor helps contribute to our city’s prosperity, yet many of us can barely afford our groceries or to go to the doctor when we are sick,” said downtown Columbus janitor Cristal Sylla, who has cleaned the 325 John McConnell Boulevard office building for the past four years. “Janitors simply want a fair shot at a good future for our families and our communities. That’s why we’re fighting for good jobs, a strong new contract and a brighter Columbus for all—whether you are Black, white or brown.”

While downtown Columbus is booming with new development worth billions of dollars, the 750 local janitors who do dignified and skilled work to ensure our city runs smoothly are forced to raise their families on wages as low as $11.50. That equals an annual salary of about $23,920, which qualifies a full-time janitor for public assistance for housing, food and healthcare.

“Columbus janitorial workers provide essential services – doing difficult, often thankless, and indispensable work that keeps many downtown buildings clean and safe. Janitors deserve a contract that helps them support themselves and their families, not only because it’s good for them but because it’s good for Columbus. When workers earn the living wages and good benefits that reflect the dignity of their work, it makes all our families stronger.” said Columbus Councilmember Elizabeth Brown, who supports a path to $15.

Many Columbus janitors⁠—who clean offices of major corporations like Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, Huntington Bancshares, American Electric Power (AEP) and JP Morgan Chase⁠—even work multiple jobs in order to make ends meet.

A strong new contract would help guarantee that Columbus janitors can better support their families and communities. While the fight starts with Columbus janitors, it will not stop until all working people across the city, including security officers and other underpaid workers, are sharing in and experiencing the real benefits from the city’s resurgence.

Janitors and their community and labor allies, including from the Columbus Education Association among other organizations, are fighting for “One Columbus.” Because it’s time Columbus worked for all of us—whether Black, white or brown—and not just a certain wealthy few.

 

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Cleveland Janitors at ArcelorMittal Steel Mill Ratify Strong New Contract With a Path to $15/Hr!

As the Janitorial Campaign for $15 and ‘One Cleveland’ Continues to Gain Momentum…

Cleveland Janitors at ArcelorMittal Steel Mill Ratify Strong New Contract With a Path to $15/Hr; Contract to Pump $1.5 million into Cleveland’s Most Neglected Neighborhoods

Next Up: 500 Downtown Cleveland Janitors Set to Fight for $15

CLEVELAND – By an overwhelming margin, 50 Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1 janitors at the ArcelorMittal Steel Mill ratified a strong new union contract this afternoon. Under the agreement, janitors will see a 60% wage increase over the five-year contract, with every worker on a path to $15 by 2023.

The agreement comes on the heels of similar contracts won in recent weeks by janitors at the Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) and the Cleveland Orchestra.

“This contract showed us how much we can accomplish when we stand together for better wages and benefits,” said Rodney Shelton, a Local 1 janitor at the ArcelorMittal Steel Mill who negotiated the contract with his co-workers. “While we won our path to $15, the fight for One Cleveland continues with hundreds of our brothers and sisters who are fighting for their contract downtown.”

“We want to congratulate the Steel Mill janitors on their huge victory because their fight is our fight, and when working families do better, we all do better and win,” said Geraldine Brown, who works at the 55 Public Square building and is covered under the next janitorial union contract up for negotiations in Cleveland. “It is time for One Cleveland where everyone can benefit from good union jobs with at least a $15 wage, and we look forward to seeing that in our contract.”

Local 1 janitors at the ArcelorMittal Steel Mill, Tri-C and the Cleveland Orchestra are among 1,650 Local 1 janitors throughout Cleveland and the surrounding area who are coming together across different backgrounds this year to win new contracts and good jobs that will benefit their communities. Janitors hope the steel mill, Tri-C and orchestra wins will set the tone for upcoming union negotiations.

With three major contract victories under their belts, Local 1 Cleveland janitors now embark on their next fight: winning a strong contract with a path to $15 for 500 additional janitors who clean Cleveland’s downtown buildings .

Through their “One Cleveland” campaign, janitors are fighting for a $15 wage along with raising standards in the janitorial industry as a way to ensure all Clevelanders—whether white, Black, or brown—benefit from the city’s booming redevelopment. The city’s comeback is made possible with millions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies, and all Clevelanders should benefit from the renaissance.

The ArcelorMittal Steel Mill agreement will pump $1.5 million into Cleveland’s most neglected neighborhoods. In addition, the janitors’ five-year union contract improves benefits such as holidays and strengthens their pension and healthcare funds.

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Cleveland Janitors Rally for $15, Shine Light on Stark Contrast Between Downtown and Their Communities

Joined by Hundreds of Supporters From Across the Country…

Cleveland Janitors Rally for $15 Under the Playhouse Square Chandelier, Shine Light on Stark Contrast Between Downtown and Their Communities

CLEVELAND – SEIU Local 1 janitors, who keep Cleveland’s most prominent buildings clean and are amid contract bargaining, rallied for $15 this afternoon under the iconic Playhouse Square chandelier to highlight how downtown’s boom has left too many neighborhoods behind. Union janitors, security officers and other supporters from Cincinnati, Columbus, Chicago, Detroit, Huston, New York and Portland rallied with Cleveland janitors in solidarity.

“In Cuyahoga County, the poverty rate for a family of four is about $25,000 a year. That’s more than what most janitors currently make,” said Local 1 janitor Craig Watson, who works at the Key Tower skyscraper. “We’re working to put food on the table and provide for our children. We need at least $15 an hour to better support our families.”

Today’s rally came on the heels of the janitor-led “Tale of Two Clevelands” trolley tour, during which Cleveland janitors drew attention to the neglect their neighborhoods have faced during downtown’s redevelopment. Today, janitors brought their fight for $15 directly to the epicenter of Cleveland’s booming resurgence.

Janitors play an essential role in keeping Cleveland clean and safe. Their contribution to our city’s renaissance is clear to anyone walking through downtown—Geis Companies, The K&D Group, Bedrock or AmTrust Financial. Our city’s janitors, however, experience another side of Cleveland. In the shadow of our city’s revival, there is another story where the mostly minority working poor, their families and their communities are struggling to get by.

Local 1 Cleveland janitors are in the process of negotiating their next union contract, which covers much of downtown’s commercial real estate community. Contract negotiations will resume next week, during which janitors will continue to press for a clear path to $15 an hour.

In addition to fighting for fair pay, Cleveland janitors hope to pave the foundation for One Cleveland—a truly prosperous city where everybody thrives.

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Milwaukee Janitors Unanimously Ratify Historic New Contract

On August 4, Local 1 Milwaukee janitors unanimously ratified a new contract that secures good wage increases and strengthens our union. The contract is the strongest agreement to date won by Local 1 Milwaukee janitors!

When we rise, we win good union jobs! Check out photos from the ratification:

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Toledo Janitors and Community Allies Join Nationwide ‘Justice for Janitors’ Rallies

TOLEDO – Dozens of SEIU Local 1 janitors and their community allies, including Ohio State Rep. Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo) and Democratic Toledo City Councilman Nick Komives, rallied Thursday afternoon to mark the 28th anniversary of the Justice for Janitors movement and demand good jobs at the PNC Bank Building.

Janitors and their allies, including building tenants, rallied outside the PNC Bank Building, 405 Madison Ave., to urge property management company ZAK Properties, an affiliate of Five Lakes Global Group,to support good jobs in Toledo by using a janitorial contractor that provides decent wages, quality benefits and union rights.

Good jobs at the PNC Bank Building will improve the lives of workers, contribute to the prosperity of Toledo’s neediest communities and bring clear benefits to the building owner and manager, including high-quality service and low turnover. ZAK Properties can support our communities by simply using a janitorial contractor that allows better job security, affordable benefits and gives the janitors a voice on the job.

“We won’t stand down until ZAK Properties honors good jobs,” said George White, SEIU Local 1 executive board member and janitor at Seaway Building Services in Toledo. “Low-wage jobs do not allow hardworking families to afford basic life necessities like groceries, rent and keeping the lights and heat on. Paying workers decent wages would allow them to support their local economies and, in turn, revitalize communities and neighborhoods.”

Janitors from across Ohio, including Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati and Akron, joined the Toledo action, which was one of many similar Justice for Janitors events happening across the country.  In remembrance of the original campaign, SEIU janitors take action in events nationwide each week of June 15.

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CPS Custodians Rally for Clean and Safe Schools for Students and Teachers at CPS Board Meeting

CPS Custodians Rally for Clean and Safe Schools for Students and Teachers at CPS Board Meeting

CPS custodians bargaining for new contract fight for the staffing, resources and supplies they need to keep schools healthy and safe for students and teachers  

CHICAGO — On Wednesday, March 21, Chicago Public School (CPS) custodians, holding mops and bottles of iconic cleaning product Fabuloso, rallied for fabulous and clean schools outside Wednesday’s CPS Board meeting. Custodians both inside and outside the board meeting urged CPS to support the 2,000 hardworking custodians who are currently in contract negotiations with contractors Aramark, RJB, Gerelex and more.

“Too many CPS custodians do not receive the proper staffing or supplies we need to keep schools healthy and clean for students and teachers,” said SEIU Local 1 Custodian Maxine Gladney. “It’s time contractors start valuing our work and offering us the resources we need to do our jobs.”

Without guarantees of proper staffing levels or supplies, many CPS custodians struggle to keep schools as clean and healthy as possible. Many custodians buy supplies like Fabuloso with money out of their own pockets because they are deeply dedicated to their schools and students. Custodians are also fighting for a dignified wage that reflects the valuable work they do as well as more sick days to prevent illness from spreading in schools.

These issues can be addressed with a strong new contract that guarantees proper staffing, supplies, sick days and a dignified wage for CPS custodians. The current contract for custodians expires on April 8. Custodians urged the CPS Board to stand with them as they bargain with contractors for cleaner schools and a better future for their communities.

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Local 1 Celebrates The Women Who Make Chicago Work!

On International Women’s Day, hundreds of Local 1 women janitors and custodians who clean our Chicagoland offices, schools and public buildings rallied with their allies as #WomenRise for good jobs and a strong new contract!

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle and Chicago Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza (10th Ward) were among the elected leaders who joined the celebration to support the women who make Chicago work!

Local 1’s women members kicked off their contract campaign on behalf of 12,000 Chicago-area janitors, 70 percent of whom are women.

It was a great event and an empowering day! Women rise! ¡Mujeres guerreras! Silne kobiety!

Check out some of the fantastic media coverage from the event:

Univision: http://bit.ly/2FoicRF

Telemundo: http://bit.ly/2txWyEM

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Hundreds Of Local 1 Janitors Kick Off Their Campaign For Strong New Contracts!

Hundreds of Local 1 members from across the Midwest came together in Chicago last Saturday for their leadership convention. Together, they kicked off their campaign for strong new contracts!

In addition to Chicago, Local 1 members from Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Detroit, Milwaukee, Toledo and St. Louis were in the house!

Contracts expire this year for more than 14,500 Local 1 janitors. At the convention hall, the energy was high as the member leaders geared up to fight for strong new contracts that include good raises and better benefits, while also protecting our progress.

We agreed that, this year, we have our best opportunity yet to win better wages and benefits. Because that’s what unites us: hope in a better future for working people and our families.

When one city wins, we ALL win! Together, #WeRise for the good union jobs our communities need to thrive!












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Union says janitors working in suburban office parks paid poverty wages

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