I think every shop steward should be training someone else and that person can be training someone else too.

~ Maurice Thomas, 32BJ Member, DC/VA/MD

Broadway Theater Cleaners Approve New Contract with Expanded Healthcare

Agreement Also Includes Raises and Greater Retirement Security

The lights are shining a bit brighter on Broadway now for workers who keep theaters clean, operating and appealing for millions of theatergoers from around the world. The 250 members of 32BJ who work at Broadway theaters have won a new contract that greatly expands healthcare coverage, improves wages and strengthens retirement security. The members voted overwhelmingly in favor of ratification at meetings that concluded today.

“This is a great day for our brothers and sisters who work in Broadway theaters,” said Héctor Figueroa, President of 32BJ. “Their determination to win a better contract paid off with our bargaining committee reaching an agreement with theater owners that significantly improves healthcare as well as wages and other benefits. Now our theater cleaner members will have the medical coverage they need to protect their health and that of their families.”

Under the old contract, every time a new production began at a Broadway theater, the cleaners who came back to work had to work six weeks before they got healthcare coverage. Cleaners who worked before the show opened often had to wait as much as ten weeks.

The new agreement cuts the six-week wait in half, or in some cases, by more than half. Healthcare coverage will begin after three weeks of work, and it is no longer linked to whether a show has opened yet. After three weeks of work, coverage starts, even if a show is still in rehearsals.

Other significant improvements in the new, three and a-half year contract include:

  • Wage increases every year;
  • Increased employer contributions to the pension fund to protect members’ retirement income; and
  • Continued, high-quality family health coverage with no sharing of premium costs.

Congratulations to our theater cleaner members on their victory!

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