Mall cleaners in 5 states get raises

SEIU 32BJWage Hikes of up to 54% for hundreds of cleaners
From 32BJ/In The News (6/14/08):

New York, NY – Seventeen East Coast malls owned by Simon Property Group, North America’s largest publicly traded Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT), will soon be cleaned by workers earning better wages and benefits. Under a new agreement between Local 32BJ and Control Building Services, which employs nearly 400 cleaners at Simon’s East Coast malls, the wages and benefits of mall cleaners will be raised to match those of area office building cleaners in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia.

“Bringing the wages for cleaners at Simon malls into line with office building cleaners will enable hundreds of workers to climb out of poverty,” said Héctor Figueroa, Local 32BJ Secretary-Treasurer. "All workers deserve the wages needed to support themselves and families."

Simon Property Group is the largest publicly traded real estate company in the United States with over $3 billion in annual revenues and ownership interest in 380 properties around the world. Control Service Group, a private New Jersey-based company that provides cleaning and maintenance services to commercial and retail properties across the country, is a $300 million company that employs more than 8,000 people.

On May 1, 2008, cleaners at 13 of the 17 Simon malls covered under the agreement will begin earning wages on par with area office building cleaners. Wage increases for cleaners at the remaining four Long Island malls will go into effect on July 1, 2008. For many of the workers, who are earning the minimum wage, the first raise will be as much as 54 percent increase.

By October 1, 2008, fully employer paid family health care for full-time workers and a health benefit which includes life insurance, a prescription drug benefit and dental and optical insurance for part-time workers will go into effect.

Press Release (pdf)

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