Missouri

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: SEIU Local 1 Janitors, Senator Jamilah Nasheed, and Allies Urge Governor Greitens: Clean Up Your Act, Ditch Dark Money, and Protect the $10 Minimum Wage

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, June 15, 2017
CONTACT: Nick Desideri desiderin@seiu1.org 630-779-5510
Izabela Miltko-Ivkovich miltkoi@seiu1.org 708-655-9681

Amidst bipartisan calls for an investigation into Governor Greitens’ dark money network…

SEIU Local 1 Janitors, Senator Jamilah Nasheed, and Allies Urge Governor Greitens: Clean Up Your Act, Ditch Dark Money, and Protect the $10 Minimum Wage

Signing HB 1194 would rip $75.6 million from the paychecks of 42,000 St. Louis working people annually

ST. LOUIS– On Thursday, June 15, Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1 janitors, fast food workers and faith and community allies rallied outside City Hall to urge Governor Eric Greitens to buck the wishes of his dark money donors, protect St. Louis’ $10 minimum wage, and honor the voices of city voters. The governor, who has repeatedly refused to release information on the big-money special interests behind his campaign, has HB 1194 on his desk. If he does not veto the bill, Governor Greitens would cave to his donors, lower the city’s minimum wage from $10 to $7.70, and take an estimated $75.6 million out of the pockets of more than 42,000 St. Louis working families annually.

“When the St. Louis minimum wage went up, my life changed. Now I can pay the bills on time,” said SEIU Local 1 janitor Sierra Parker. “Governor Greitens needs to stand with the working families instead of his dark money donors. He doesn’t know what it’s like to walk in our shoes. Don’t take money out of our pockets.”

“HB 1194 is simply a bad bill,” said state Senator Jamilah Nasheed (D-St. Louis). “It is set to take money out of the pockets of working people. When a community wants to show initiative and lead on issues – like economic development and workers’ rights – the state legislature should get out of the way. The people of St. Louis have spoken; the state legislature should respect that. At the end of the day, this is a St. Louis issue decided by the people of St. Louis for the city of St. Louis.”

“If the Governor does not veto the pre-emption bill, on August 28 I will have to go back to deciding which bills are going to get paid, and which ones are not,” said Show Me $15 fast food worker Bettie Douglas.  “No one should have to decide whether or not they are going to have their electricity cut off or not to have food on their table. Today, on the 27th anniversary of Justice for Janitors Day, fast food workers proudly stand with janitors in St. Louis and across the country.  We will stand together and we will fight back.”

Outside City Hall, Local 1 janitors, armed with brooms, buckets, and mops, “cleaned up” the mess left behind by low wages including crime, poverty, and struggling neighborhoods and took out the trash on politicians like Governor Greitens who stand with secretive billionaire donors instead of working people.  The action took place on the 27th anniversary of Justice for Janitors Day, on which hundreds of peacefully protesting janitors were arrested. St. Louis janitors honored that memory by fighting to protect St. Louis’ $10 minimum wage.

States and cities across the United States raise the minimum wage, and while janitors are moving the Midwest forward, politicians like Governor Greitens are doing their best to hold them back. On Tuesday, a bipartisan group of Missouri state senators called for an investigation into A New Missouri, a political action committee (PAC) linked to the governor, which is not required to release a list of donors. Local 1 janitors and allies called on Governor Greitens to listen to the voices of St. Louis voters instead of his secretive big-money donors and protect St. Louis’ $10 minimum wage.

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SEIU Local 1 represents more than 8,000 janitors, higher education faculty, public sector workers, school custodians and industrial workers across Missouri. Together, SEIU Local 1 members fight for an economy that works for all working families, not just the wealthy and well-connected. 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: SEIU Local 1 Janitor Willie Cannon Responds to Missouri Senate’s Last-Minute Passage of HB 1194

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 12, 2017
CONTACT:
Nick Desideri desiderin@seiu1.org 630-779-5510

SEIU Local 1 Janitor Willie Cannon Responds to Missouri Senate’s Last-Minute Passage of HB 1194

ST. LOUIS – The following statement is from Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1 janitor Willie Cannon. For years, SEIU Local 1 janitors, adjunct faculty, and public sector workers have been at the forefront of the fight to raise the minimum wage in St. Louis. Today, in the final hours of legislative session, the Missouri Senate passed HB 1194:

“By voting today to lower wages for tens of thousands of working people, the Missouri Senate turned back the clock on working families and our neighborhoods.

“The wage increase has already gone into effect, so HB 1194 would slash paychecks for 35,000 St. Louis working families.

“But Local 1 members are ready to fight to make sure Governor Greitens sides with working families and not special interests.”

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SEIU Local 1 represents more than 8,000 janitors, higher education faculty, public sector workers, school custodians and industrial workers across Missouri. Together, SEIU Local 1 members fight an economy that works for all working families, not just the wealthy and well-connected. 

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Minimum wage law takes effect in St. Louis, May 5 [VIDEO]

St. Louis PresserST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) – An ordinance setting the City of St. Louis’ minimum wage to $10 takes effect Friday, May 5. According to a news release, the Circuit Court lifted its injunction that previously blocked the ordinance from becoming law. The minimum wage will rise to $11 beginning January 1, 2018.

Watch the full video, which includes an interview with Local 1 janitor Cynthia Sanders, over at Fox 2 News.

If you have any questions about the minimum wage increase, please call the Member Resource Center at (877) 233-8880, Monday – Friday, between 9am and 5pm. We want to work with you to make sure you can receive the raises you’re owed.

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St. Louis minimum wage increase takes effect Friday

STL FlagST. LOUIS – St. Louis City will raise its minimum wage to $10 an hour as the clock strikes midnight May 5. Circuit Judge Steven Ohmer lifted the injunction on the city ordinance that will bring the wage increase into effect.

The bill will eventually cap out at $11/hour as of Jan. 1 , 2018.

Minimum wage workers, like Richard Bullion of the Service Employees International Union, celebrated the announcement Friday.

“Too many working people in St. Louis need to take a second job just to keep our head above water. Between bills, food, and rent, there’s not much left at the end of the day,” Bullion, a janitor for 25 years, said. “We need to make sure working families can make a living, and raising the minimum wage will go a long way towards making that a reality. The janitors, higher education faculty, and public sector workers of SEIU Local 1 thank Mayor Lyda Krewson for implementing this law. We fought long and hard for this victory.”

This is a huge victory for the working families of St. Louis! Read the full story over at The Missouri Times.

 

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VICTORY: St. Louis Minimum Wage Increase

St. Louis PresserAfter an over two-year fight, the minimum wage in St. Louis city rose to $10 on May 5 and will rise to $11 dollars on January 1, 2018. If you work in St. Louis city and make less than $10 an hour, your wages should have gone up to $10 an hour.

It’s the activism of SEIU Local 1 members that pushed St. Louis to raise the wage for working people, and raising the minimum wage is the first step in making our economy better for working families. By keeping our union strong, we make progress together for a brighter future. 

If you have any questions about the minimum wage increase, please call the Member Resource Center at (877) 233-8880, Monday – Friday, between 9am and 5pm. We want to work with you to make sure you can receive the raises you’re owed.

Local 1 janitor Cynthia Sanders spoke with Fox 2 News about how raising the wage will boost our communities. Click here to check it out!

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SLU adjuncts finalize their first union contract

5743704552ae5.image ST. LOUIS • St. Louis University leaders and members of the Service Employees International Union have tentatively agreed on the first contract for adjunct faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences and School of Education.

The contract is still pending approval from union members within the next week.

The five-year contract comes more than a year after the SLU adjunct professors voted to unionize. Out of 156 eligible voters, 89 voted in favor back in March of 2016, and 28 voted against it.

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Mayor Slay, advocates gear up for minimum wage fight

589b69c474dff.imageJEFFERSON CITY •St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay made his way to the state Capitol on Monday to speak out against legislation that would block the city’s minimum wage increase, which the Missouri Supreme Court upheld last week.

His fourth and final term as the city’s chief executive may be quickly coming to a close – the primary election for his job is on Tuesday – but raising the St. Louis minimum wage to $11 an hour by 2018 remains a potentially elusive goal.

“We’re going to stand firm,” Slay said Monday. “We’re going to fight this thing all the way through.”

The city raised its minimum wage in 2015, but was quickly sued by business groups who said the ordinance conflicted with state law.

The state’s high court may have sided with the city, but celebrations proved to be short-lived. Less than a week later, advocates and city lawmakers are testifying against proposals from state lawmakers that would nullify St. Louis’ increase and ban other cities from doing the same.

Slay joins other advocates, including some of the state’s labor unions, to denounce the Legislature’s involvement in city politics.

United Food and Commercial Workers Local 655 and Service Employees International Union Local 1 are partnering to campaign against proposals banning cities from raising the minimum wage beyond state levels.

Read the full story over at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch!

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Missouri Gov. Greitens signs right-to-work legislation

greitens_rtw_signing_3Gov. Eric Greitens took a road trip Monday in celebration of making Missouri the nation’s 28th right-to-work state.

The Republican signed Senate Bill 19, which bars unions and employers from requiring workers to pay dues, at three ceremonies. The first one was in Springfield at an abandoned warehouse before a small crowd of supporters.

“For too long in the state of Missouri, for too long people bowed down to intimidation, they bowed down to powerful union bosses who acted to protect their own interests instead of protecting the interest of Missouri workers,” Greitens said.

The ceremony was disrupted briefly by about 10 pro-union demonstrators who shouted “right to work, wrong for us!” They were escorted out a minute later.

Greitens said the new law won’t eliminate unions but instead will make them more responsive and accountable to their members.

Organized labor says the legislation will lead to lower wages and have an uncertain impact on economic growth.

“It’s sad to see Gov. Greitens and the Republican legislature cave to big donors, corporations and special interests at the expense of Missouri’s working families,” said Vanessa Coleman with the Service Employees International Union. “The janitors, higher education faculty, school cafeteria workers, and sports facility workers of SEIU Local 1 will continue to fight for an economy that works for all of us, not just well-connected and out-of-touch billionaires.”

Read the full story over at St. Louis Public Radio!

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: SEIU Local 1 Member and Kauffman Stadium Concessions Worker Vanessa Coleman Responds to Governor Greitens’ Signing of “Right to Work” Law

IMG_1013SEIU Local 1 Member and Kauffman Stadium Concessions Worker Vanessa Coleman Responds to Governor Greitens’ Signing of “Right to Work” Law

KANSAS CITY – The following is a statement from Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1 member and Kauffman Stadium Concessions Worker Vanessa Coleman:

“It’s sad to see Governor Greitens and the Republican legislature cave to big donors, corporations and special interests at the expense of Missouri’s working families.

“But our movement for a fair economy is growing – just last year, Kansas City Public School custodians, janitors at Lambert St. Louis International Airport, and St. Louis higher education faculty joined the fight for a voice on the job, higher wages, and a brighter future.

“The janitors, higher education faculty, school cafeteria workers, and sports facility workers of SEIU Local 1 will continue to fight for an economy that works for all of us, not just well-connected and out-of-touch billionaires.”

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SEIU Local 1 represents over 8,000 janitors, higher education faculty, public sector workers, school custodians and industrial workers across Missouri. Together, SEIU Local 1 members fight an economy that works for all working families, not just the wealthy and well-connected. 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: SEIU Local 1 Member and SLU professor Jameson Ramirez on the Passage of SB19

SEIU Local 1 Member and SLU professor Jameson Ramirez on the Passage of SB19

ST. LOUIS– The following is a statement from SEIU Local 1 member and Saint Louis University higher education faculty member Jameson Ramirez: 

“Last year, higher education faculty at Saint Louis University joined together to fight for a voice on the job and a seat at the table. Higher education faculty in St. Louis show that when we are united under a common cause and organize for a better future, we win.

“But so-called Right to Work makes it more difficult for working people to make themselves heard.  This proposed legislation essentially extends a false hand of opportunity to workers while strangling their real opportunities with the other hand. It will lower wages, slash benefits, and put a secure retirement out of reach for thousands of hardworking Missouri families. The simple fact is Right to Work means less money in my pocket every month – median incomes in Right to Work states are thousands less than in those without it.

“We hope Governor Greitens shows that he is truly fighting for the working people of Missouri and vetoes this harmful bill. If not, we’ll know he caved to the special interests, billionaire donors and big corporations that bankrolled his campaign.”

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SEIU Local 1 represents over 8,000 janitors, higher education faculty, public sector workers, school custodians and industrial workers across Missouri. Together, SEIU Local 1 members fight an economy that works for all working families, not just the wealthy and well-connected. 

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