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Fri Jun 15, 2018, 06:56 PM

Janitors' union rallies supporters to 'Fight for 15' as workers prepare for contract talks

Hundreds of janitors and supporters gathered in front of the Spirit of Detroit statue Thursday afternoon to kick off a labor campaign seeking a $15 minimum wage ahead of contract negotiations.

Many wore purple shirts and held purple signs that said "One Detroit" and "Fight for 15" in a rally organized by the Service Employees International Union Local 1. Many of the 1,700 janitors in the union are making $9.25-$12.45 per hour, which organizers say is not enough to make ends meet.

The current three-year contract with janitorial service companies is set to expire July 31. Negotiations are scheduled to begin June 20 and members are willing to strike if they do not get what they want, SEIU Local 1 Communications Director Izabela Miltko-Ivkovich said.

The top three union contractors in downtown Detroit are Detroit-based Professional Building Maintenance LLC, Southfield-based GDI Omni Inc. and New York City-based ABM Industries Inc., Miltko-Ivkovich said.


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