by Sam Williamson
Western Pennsylvania District Leader
Pittsburgh is having a banner year. This weekend, commercial cleaners ratified a new four-year contract. This agreement increases wages, protects healthcare and pensions, and provides access to the legal and training fund as well as sick days. We are winning!
Your bargaining team worked hard for you. When employers weren’t willing to give you the money you deserve and wanted you to pay for healthcare, the bargaining team stood firm and pushed back. We let employers know that we weren’t going to settle for less than what we deserve. You hit the streets in record numbers. More than 250 members joined me in the pouring rain and voted to authorize a strike if negotiations failed to lead to a fair contract. Fortunately, we reached a settlement two days before the contract’s expiration.
We are working to make Pittsburgh a better, stronger city. This win is in addition to all we’ve gained this year. We fought together to get Pitt property service workers a fair contract. We worked to get more than 1,100 Pittsburgh security officers their first-ever union contract. We supported the Safe and Secure Building Act to ensure that building standards keep our city safe. We fought for paid sick days legislation that helps 50,000 Pittsburghers. We knocked on thousands of doors to get progressive judges elected to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
We are Raising America! We can see the fruits of our labor. This is just some of the good work we have done this year that not only helps our members but benefits our communities and our city. The Steel City is stronger because of YOU!
We are continuing the streak of winning strong contracts along with our brothers and sisters in DC, Maryland, Virginia, and Philadelphia. But, it’s not over. Contracts will be negotiated for the rest of 32BJ cleaners and SEIU members across the nation for the next 15 months. We must support them. It is one union, one fight! Together we fight, we win!