University rehires laid-off custodians
BERKELEY, CA — The University of California at Berkeley has rehired five custodians who were issued layoff notices in August, according to The Daily Californian.
The custodians were a casualty of the building they worked in being demolished, though the university maintained that it would rehire them if new positions became available, the article stated.
According to the article, the initial uncertainty surrounding their employment led to a protest on campus, held by American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 3299.
"This was a big moment because these layoffs were totally unnecessary; there were open positions in other custodial departments," said Sarah Leadem, an organizer of the protest.
"Their rationale was, 'We're getting rid of the building, so get rid of the workers,'" Leadem added.
Positions have now been provided to all five workers, with four now employed through Physical Plant Campus Services and one hired through Residential Services, the article noted.
Campus spokesperson Janet Gilmore said that the decision to rehire was not associated with the protest, and that the process for rehire was already underway prior to the protest, the article added.
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