WILMINGTON, DE – The holidays came a few days early for nearly 600 commercial office cleaners who struck a deal with cleaning contractors which provides fair wage increases, maintains benefits at their current level, improves vacation time and days off.
“A wage increase is the best Christmas present we could have. We work hard. All we want is an opportunity to support our families without sacrificing quality time with them. Many of us work two and three jobs to make it. This agreement will allow us to have family time and put a few dollars away for savings,” said Frank Reyes, a commercial cleaner.
Negotiations opened December 1 with various cleaning contractors that provide services for prominent businesses in the city. The contract covers nearly 600 commercial office cleaners in Wilmington and New Castle County. The deal comes a week before the current contract expires and is subject to ratification by the cleaners next month. Details will be provided upon ratification.
“We are glad to have reached an amicable agreement with employers which will allow these hardworking janitors to support their families and their communities. No one should have to work two and three jobs and still rely on public assistance. This wage increase will help both these cleaners and the Delaware economy,” said Daisy Cruz, Mid-Atlantic District Leader.
The janitors clean 50 prominent office buildings and facilities across Wilmington and New Castle County like PNC Bank Center, AstraZeneca, Bank of America, Chase Bank and the Blue Cross/Blue Shield Corporate Plaza.
More than 130,000 SEIU janitors across the nation will negotiate contracts in 2015-2016 to raise the standards of their industry. More than 75,000 from Boston to Virginia are members of 32BJ SEIU. Last week, thousands of commercial cleaners in the Philadelphia Suburbs, NYC and New Jersey reached tentative agreements with various employers which will provide them with family-sustaining wages.
With more than 145,000 members in eleven states and Washington, D.C, including 22,000 in Pennsylvania, 32BJ SEIU is the largest property services union in the country.