East Falls–A traffic-snarling protest at the intersection of School House Lane and Henry Avenue resulted in the arrests of five protesters who were standing up for the employees of McGinn Security. The demonstration is the result of months of protest against poverty wages and poor working conditions, and most recently against wage theft by McGinn Security, a security contractor at the airport, Moore College and Philadelphia University.
“After months of mistreatment from McGinn Security, we are standing up and speaking out. We want an end to wage theft and mistreatment by McGinn,” said Josette Bates, overnight security officer at Philadelphia University.
“It’s great to see that people are willing to get arrested for standing up for us. We’ve been living every day with a lack of respect on the job. We want McGinn Security to hear the message loud and clear that security officers perform an important job and deserve respect,” said McGinn security officer Kami Vincent.
Over the last three months, Philadelphia University security officers have signed petitions, called elected officials, filed Unfair Labor Practice charges and held several protests against poverty wages and poor working conditions from McGinn Security. Just this Monday, McGinn workers filed charges with Department of Labor for wage and hour violations.
The security officers union 32BJ SEIU helped organize the demonstration.
“We represent thousands of security officers in Philadelphia and are here standing with the McGinn security officers in their fight for better wages and conditions. Philadelphia is the worst city for poverty in the nation and we don’t need McGinn Security keeping hard working Philadelphians in poverty,” said Wayne MacManiman, Mid-Atlantic District Director of 32BJ SEIU.
The demonstration comes at a critical time as Philadelphia was recently again designated the worst big city in the country for people who are living in deep poverty. McGinn Security undermines area standards, paying officers as little as $7.50 an hour, only adding to the problem of poverty in Philadelphia.
With more than 125,000 members, including 10,000 in the Philadelphia area, 32BJ is the largest property services union in the country.