Category Archives: Custodial

A move toward citywide educational equity

Source: By Susan Snyder, Philadelphia Inquirer, Thu, Apr. 20, 2006

…… Also at yesterday’s commission meeting, workers who belong to the union representing janitors and bus attendants criticized the district for hiring a private firm to run custodial services in 14 schools. Michael McGinley, president of Local 1201 of the Service Employees International Union, told the commission that Sodexho, a Maryland-based company, had not improved services in the schools and that district workers unfairly were held to higher standards. “Why are we expected to clean 32,000 square feet – 10,000 square feet more than contractors?” he asked. He called the contract with Sodexho “a complete waste of taxpayer money.” The district, which hired Sodexho earlier this school year, is paying the firm about $9 million for this school year.

Battle brewing over custodians

Source: By PETER GOONAN, The Republican (MA), Monday, April 17, 2006

SPRINGFIELD – A union lawyer is threatening a battle after learning the city may replace night custodians in the school system with an outside cleaning company effective July 1. . …….The Springfield Finance Control Board on Tuesday advertised for bids from companies interested in taking over custodial duties in 45 school buildings on the second shift, 2:30 to 11 p.m. …… The control board is also considering privatizing cafeteria services and has chosen companies to take over street sweeping and workmen’s compensation. Connor said a letter sent by Puccia to custodians last week indicates that privatization is a done deed, and occurs after the custodians settled a seven-year contract with the control board in September.

Janitor charged in sexual abuse of 2 students

Source: BY KATHY ROUTLIFFE, Niles Herald Spectator (MN), April 13, 2006

Niles Township High School District 219 officials are considering having a public forum to update district parents and residents about the April 6 arrest of a district contract employee in a sexual abuse case involving two Niles North High School students. Arturo Luna, a boys locker room attendant who had worked since last September at Niles North High School is charged with aggravated criminal sexual assault for allegedly having sex with two female school students, ages 14 and 16, in one case multiple times. …… Luna was an employee of Aramark Corp., which contracts with District 219 for food and supplemental services. Aramark fired him as a result of the incident.

UB shifting back to unionized custodians

Source: By HENRY L. DAVIS, Buffalo News (NY), 4/1/2006

The University at Buffalo plans to stop outsourcing its custodial work to private companies and return to using unionized employees, school officials said Friday. …. “The problem is the wages,” said Michael F. Dupre, associate vice president for university facilities. He said the established minimum prevailing wage for maintenance personnel in the Buffalo area is only $7.03 an hour, which is not high enough to maintain a stable work force. Today, four private firms provide about 135 custodial workers compared to the 70 or so employees still represented by the Civil Services Employees Association Local 602.

Custodian fired after allegations made by a Columbia High student

Source: By Philip Sean Curran, News Record NJ, Wednesday, March 22, 2006 10:55 PM EST

MAPLEWOOD, NJ – A male custodian at Columbia High School was fired for allegedly asking a female student for her phone number, school officials said Monday. More details were not made available. Superintendent of Schools Peter P. Horoschak did not return a phone call seeking comment. The custodian had worked for Aramark, the company that provides custodial services at Columbia. An Aramark spokeswoman did not return a phone call seeking comment.

Sodexho to pay $61,000 to settle San Jose sex harassment case

Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal – 11:14 AM PST Tuesday, Jan 10, 2006

Sodexho Management Inc. has agreed to pay $61,000 to a custodian it employed at Agnew Development Center in San Jose who complained of sexual harassment by a male nurse, federal officials said Tuesday. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said Gaithersburg, Md.-based Sodexho denied wrongdoing in the case but agreed to settle after voluntary mediation efforts. …. According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, Sodexho failed to investigate or stop the harassment, and they also retaliated against Sanchez for reporting it. The retaliation included tasking Ms. Sanchez with more difficult work, reducing her workload, and issuing disciplinary write-ups.

Union loses cleaning work at 22 schools

Source: Susan Snyder, Philadelphia Inquirer (PA), Fri, Dec. 30, 2005

The Philadelphia School District has hired a private company to take over the cleaning responsibilities in 22 of its largest high schools – a move that has angered the custodial workers’ union. Paul Vallas, district chief executive, said poor attendance and low productivity had spurred the decision this month to take the work away from Local 1201 of the Service Employees International Union.

Lakeview votes to outsource custodial services

Source: Katie Oliveri, The Battle Creek Enquirer (MI), Dec 13, 2005

Despite a show of overwhelming opposition from community members, Lakeview’s board of education approved 5-1 outsourcing custodial services at the new high school as a cost-saving measure for the district Monday…….. The district now will enter into an 18-month custodial services agreement with Hi-Tec Building Services for $285,948, including benefits, for 10 custodians at the new high school, effective Dec. 27. …. Bill Farmer, union representative with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees representing Lakeview’s custodial staff, said he was disappointed at Monday’s outcome since he estimated a potential $198,000 savings from the union’s proposal. (UB)

U. contractor under fire for anti-union violence

Source: Brown Daily Herald (RI). 11/30/05 Section

Martins Maintenance, a janitorial contractor employed by the University, is being criticized by the local chapter of the Service Employees International Union for allegedly assaulting and firing an employee who talked to union organizers. ….. Martins Maintenance was one of several outside contractors hired by the University three years ago when Brown Dining Services extended the hours of some of its retail locations, such as the Gate, said Mark Nickel, director of the University News Service.