Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

Despite striking workers, university continues contract

January 25, 2011
COLLEGE PARK, MD — Following last semester''s protests against a university cleaning supply contractor, university officials said they are closely following the labor dispute between Daycon and its striking workforce but can''t yet meet students'' demands to terminate its contract with the firm, according to The Diamondback.
Last April, 55 Daycon employees went on strike over a contract dispute: The Upper Marlboro-based supplier of janitorial equipment and chemicals has refused to negotiate with them thus far, and the company is now subject to an investigation by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the article stated.
Members of Feminism Without Borders and College Park Students for a Democratic Society delivered letters and petitions to university officials last year and scrubbed the Testudo statue outside McKeldin Library to raise awareness and ask the university administration to "clean up its act," the article noted.
"I appreciate your commitment to social justice and diligence about university business practices," university President Wallace Loh wrote to Feminism Without Borders in response to the letters, adding that he also wrote to the presidents of both Daycon and the strikers'' union to say the university was monitoring the issue closely and to urged them to settle their dispute fairly.
According to the article, Mary Yanik, president of the university''s Feminism Without Borders chapter, said that while the letters are "an important step in the right direction," it is still the university''s responsibility to drop its contract with Daycon until the company negotiates with the strikers.
"Cutting the contract until they figure out those contracts with the workers would send a positive message that we''re committed to social justice and also force the company to act immediately on this issue," Yanik added.
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