Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

Contract expiration dates loom

September 28, 2011

WASHINGTON — As the nation''s attention turns toward job creation, thousands of low-wage janitors and office cleaners in a dozen cities will take to the streets to support jobs that have created a path to the middle class for hundreds of thousands of workers, according to a press release.

However, because of the deepening economic crisis, janitors, like many Americans, have seen their standard of living erode and are being asked to work more for less, the release stated.

According to the release, contracts for nearly 150,000 janitors and office cleaners will expire over the next year, bringing the debate over the role private employers play in our economic recovery to major cities across the country.

Janitors and cleaners will be seeking agreements that create good jobs, boost employment and provide tenants and building owners with a reliable, trained and stable workforce in many of our nation''s biggest cities from New York to Chicago to Los Angeles, the release noted.

"Our workload is growing, but not our wages," said Oscar Zapata, a father of two who has worked as a UNICCO-employed cleaner in Washington for 16 years but earns just $12.10 per hour. "We want to offer our families a better future; that''s hard to do with this salary."

Click here to read the complete release.