WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. —On Wednesday morning, contract negotiations opened in White Plains for superintendents, handymen and women, porters and others who serve 100,000 apartment building and condo residents in towns and cities across the Hudson Valley.
“We are seeking a fair contract, so we can continue to support our families, and do our best for our buildings’ tenants, who rely on us night and day,” said Antonio Delgado, a superintendent in Scarsdale and member of the 32BJ bargaining committee. “I’ve been a super for over 30 years and my father before me was a super for 35. We stayed with the job because we both believe in helping others. But we could only do it because we had the health benefits and pension to support this long tradition of reliable service. I’m proud to start bargaining for older members like me, for the newer generation we mentor, and for the continued service we provide to tens of thousands of Hudson Valley residents.”
The 1,400 workers are represented in negotiations by a 32BJ SEIU bargaining committee comprised of elected members and union representatives from the largest building service employees union in the nation. They will sit across the table from representatives of the BRI, the Building and Realty Institute of Westchester and the Mid-Hudson Region Inc. Negotiators hope to reach a fair agreement on a new contract before the current contract expires at midnight on September 30.
“Since our last contract negotiations in 2014, the Hudson Valley’s economy has outperformed the nation and the state, and the region’s real estate industry has boomed,” said Lenore Friedlaender, Assistant to the President at 32BJ SEIU. “We hope that the BRI will recognize that the next contract should maintain the level of benefits that have created a strong, stable culture of service among building workers, while keeping up with the region’s rising costs.”
With 163,000 affiliates in 11 states, including 4,000 in the Hudson Valley, 32BJ SEIU is the largest building service workers union in the country.