“STRIKE FOR OUR LIVES”
“HUELGA PARA NUESTRAS VIDAS”
After four years of organizing led by retail janitors with CTUL, including marches, a 12 Day Hunger Strike, and three strikes in 2013, and after a year of dialogue between Target Corporation and CTUL members, Target committed to play a leadership role by implementing the industry’s first Responsible Contractor Policy. Yet, the companies that clean Target stores are not only ignoring workers’ voices, they are also ignoring Target by not respecting the new Responsible Contractor Policy. Workers still report having to work seven days a week, ongoing sub-poverty wages that take a toll on workers’ health, and no clear path to ensure workers’ voices. Since these and other large cleaning companies that clean stores in the metro area like Home Depot, Sears, Kohls and others continue to pay poverty wages and refuse to take workers seriously, workers at four cleaning companies walked out on strike on Black Friday, Nov. 28, 2014: Prestige Maintenance USA, Carlson Building Maintenance, Kimco Services and Diversified Maintenance Systems.
Thank you Uchechukwu Iroegbu for the incredible photos!
Over 200 allies braved to cold to stand with retail janitors from over 50 stores in the Twin Cities metro area who walked out on strike against cleaning companies.
Picket lines started bright and early at 6am, with plenty of drums and lots of creative signs.
Workers from across the industry stood up for fair wages and the right to organize, including employees from Prestige Maintenance USA (cleans Target stores), Carlson Building Maintenance (cleans Target, Cub, Festival, and other stores), Kimco Services (cleans Home Depot, Kohls, JCPenney and other stores), and Diversified Maintenance Systems (cleans Sears, Kmart)…
CTUL members from other industries stood with striking janitors as well, including fast food workers, hotel workers and others…
Several elected officials also stood with striking janitors, including:
State Representative Raymond Dehn
Minneapolis City Council Member Elizabeth Glidden
Minneapolis City Council Member Alondra Cano
And allies representing hundreds of thousands of community members from many different organizations came out locally, statewide, and even from around the country
Neighbors Organizing for Change (NOC)
Striking Walmart workers from OurWalmart
Minneapolis Teachers Union Local 59
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church
Bethany Lutheran Church
SEIU Local 26
Jewish Community Action
UFCW Local 1189
Take Action Minnesota
Greater Minnesota Worker Center
Land Stewardship Project
Youth from Northfield
Coalition of Immokalee Workers and Student/Farmworker Alliance from Florida
Workers’ Dignity / Dignidad Obrera from Tennessee
Interfaith Worker Justice based in Chicago
United for a Fair Economy in Boston
And the picketing continued for three hours, sending a loud message to cleaning companies that it is time for this industry to change!