32BJ of SERVICE EMPLOYEES INTERNATIONAL UNION
NJ ESSENTIAL WORKERS, 32BJ SEIU, AND ELECTED ALLIES SECURE PASSAGE OF WORKER RETENTION BILL, ESTABLISHING JOB PROTECTIONS FOR TENS OF THOUSANDS OF NJERS
With passage of Worker Retention bill S2389/A4682, NJ becomes only the second state in the union to ensure that workers are safe from termination for 60 days after a change in contractor, keeping workers on the job.
Trenton, NJ– Today, essential New Jersey workers, 32BJ SEIU, allied elected officials ended a months-long effort to secure the passage of the Worker Retention bill (S2389/A4682) with two key Yes votes in both houses of the state legislature. With its passage, the groundbreaking new law makes New Jersey only the second state in the union to offer tens of thousands of building, airport passenger, and food service workers vital job protections.
“Every time the contract changes hands we go through the anguish of possibly losing our jobs. This is no way to live. As school cafeteria workers, we are there for the children. We understand that some of them only get the meals they get at school,” said Plainfield School Food Services Worker Tiffany Green Hayward. “It is necessary to create a climate of stability among the workers. This law would be the perfect way to let us know that we matter and that we are appreciated.”
“When there is a sudden change in management, the workers most directly impacted by that development should not be treated as an afterthought,” said 32BJ SEIU Executive Vice President and NJ State Director Kevin Brown. “The worker retention bill finally protects New Jersey’s janitors, security, porters, concierges, and handypersons and others from unfairly losing their jobs due to a contract change. It’s past time that the same New Jerseyans who proved essential to battling the pandemic and our economic recovery no longer see their lives upended due to a decision they had no role in making.”
The bill creates a 60-day grace period for these service workers after a change in contractor. This modest, reasonable job protection measure would apply to schools, apartment complexes and numerous other buildings statewide. At least 25 jurisdictions have adopted worker retention policies nationwide. Here in New Jersey, Newark and Hoboken have already adopted similar policies. Now, the Worker Retention bill heads to Governor Phil Murphy’s desk for his signature.
With more than 175,000 members in 12 states, 32BJ SEIU is the largest property service workers union in the country.