Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

School district's disputes with labor union continue

April 19, 2010
NEW HAVEN, CT — The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) is in a heated contract dispute with the New Haven Public Schools Board of Education over the privatization of custodial services, according to the New Haven Register.
It currently costs $14 million each year to pay for custodial services in the facilities that comprise the New Haven Public Schools; outsourcing the work would cost half that amount, the story stated.
According to the story, city of New Haven and New Haven public Schools officials claim privatizing the work would be more reliable because an average of one in four custodians does not report to work on a typical day.
AFSCME Council 4 spokesman Larry Dorman said: "We believe our custodians do great work in a cost-effective fashion. We don''t think privatizing and contracting it out and outsourcing makes any sense. We don''t think the future of New Haven ought to be $9-an-hour jobs with no benefits and no rights. Clearly, putting every custodian and maintainer''s job out to bid is a hammer that is designed to punish. We get that, but we also have the right to speak out and stand up against it."
New Haven Public Schools Chief Operating Officer (CEO) Will Clark calls Dorman''s comments "ridiculous" and points out that the city of New Haven''s Living Wage ordinance sets minimum hourly wages on city contracts at $12, the story noted.
Bids from eight companies have been received so far and information on each will be made public once their details have been reviewed, the story added.
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