CTUL Rally for Justice in Retail Cleaning
On September 29, 2012, retail cleaning workers with CTUL are organizing a Rally for Justice in Retail Cleaning, calling on Sears Holding Company to contract with responsible cleaning contractors. Worker centers from around the country will be joining CTUL for a day of reflection and action. Keep an eye out on our website for more details soon: www.ctul.net
Check out the video call to action here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8UWV3L5DEo
After over a decade of declining wages, increasing workloads, and multiple lawsuits and United States Department of Labor (USDOL) investigations involving reports of millions of dollars of unpaid overtime wages around the country, retail cleaning workers in the Twin Cities have decided that enough is enough. Since April 2010, workers have attempted to open dialogue with the companies that impact this industry to discuss ways to improve wages and working conditions. While many workers report winning the first pay increase they have seen after over a decade of declining wages, the companies have continually refused to open dialogue.
Currently Sears contracts with Diversified Maintenance, a company that has been involved in at least six lawsuits and one USDOL investigation regarding unpaid overtime wages, all just in the past five years. Interestingly, according to a recent article in the LA Times, retail analysts estimate that Sears spends about one third the amount per square foot on maintenance and upkeep expenses as other retail chains. At the same time, Edward Lampert, chair of Sears Holding Company, recently was in contract to buy a $40 million, 2.7-acre, 17,000-square foot estate on an island in Florida. At the same time, a Diversified Maintenance worker who cleans a K-Mart (part of Sears Holding Company) in Anoka, MN reports that he is currently unable to afford rent with the low wages he earns and is virtually homeless.
On Saturday, September 29, 2012, CTUL is organizing a day of reflection and action, calling on Sears Holding Company to contract with responsible cleaning contractors.