Hundreds of Twin Cities-area union janitors and security officers are slated Saturday morning to vote on whether to give their bargaining committees the right to call strikes in the stalled labor negotiations.
Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 26 said it has been bargaining for months for new contracts for its more than 6,000 members who are janitors and security officers, and that the groups have been working since Dec. 31 without new contracts. The union said both of the labor bargaining committees have recommended a "yes" vote for a strike authorizstion.
The union workers, who will take their strike authorization vote at 11 a.m. at the Minneapolis Convention Center, are "facing the threat of reduced hours and benefits," Local 26 said in a press statement. To date, "negotiations have yielded little progress," despite a federal mediator assisting in the talks, the union said.
The union has accused management of bargaining in bad faith;the Minneapolis-St. Paul Contract Cleaners Association was not immediately available for comment.
Joining the Local 26 members for their strike vote will be U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minnesota, as well as dozens of community allies, the union said.
If workers give their bargaining committees the right to call strikes, that authorization is likely to push the parties to sit down at the negotiations table and hammer out new agreements. For example, three years ago, Local 26 janitors gave the union strike authorization but they were able to avert a work stoppage and reached a settlement with management.
Still, if a strike were to occur this time, a labor stoppage would affect commercial office buildings at hundreds of locations across the Twin Cities, from Apple Valley and Burnsville to Stillwater and Woodbury.
A media representative for Local 26 said the union has janitors and security officers working at these buildings across the metro:
- Apple Valley – Anchor Bank, Dakota County West Service Center
- Burnsville – Gateway Office Plaza, Park Nicollet Clinic
- Eagan – Thomson Reuters, TCA National Headquarters, Ecolab, Blue Cross – Yankee place and Waterview, plus corporate
- Eden Prairie – United Healthcare Optum Health Buildings, GE Capital, Crosstown Centre, First Western Bank and Trust, Prairie Lutheran Church, Hennepin County Library
- Edina – Southdale Office Centre and mall, Galleria, Minnesota Center, Fairview Southdale Hospital, Edina Corporate Center, One Corporate Center/Plaza, US Bank, Wells Fargo
- Fridley – Medtronic HQ, Target Dist. Center
- Golden Valley – General Mills HQ, Target Financial, KARE-11 TV, Wells Fargo Golden Valley
- Hopkins – Cargill
- Lakeville – Cedar Ave Prof Building
- Maple Grove – Arbor Lakes, Wells Fargo Maplewood,
- Mendota Heights –Mendota Office Center
- Minneapolis – More than 200 locations in the city with the most workers concentrated at US Bank, Wells Fargo and Target.
- Minnetonka – Cargill, Children’s Hospitals and Clinics
- Plymouth – Plymouth Corporate Center, US Bank
- Roseville – Rosedale Corporate Plaza,Rosedale Shopping Center. Roseville Corporate Center, MN Dept of Education, Symantec – Centre Pointe Business Park, MN Dot – Metro District, Rosedale Corporate Plaza, Roseville West Office, Symantec, Windsor Office Plaza, Roseville Professional Center, Rosedale Towers, Twin Lakes Medical, Centre Pointe Business Park, Rosewood Office Plaza, Sebesta Blomberg, Roseridge Office Plaza, Northstar Bank – Roseville, Fed Ex, Roseville Area High School, Seimens Building Technologies, Ramsey County Library – Roseville, Industrial Fabrics Assn Intl, Children’s Center Pointe Admin Building
- St. Louis Park – Metropoint buildings
- Stillwater – 3M, Stillwater High School
- Woodbury – Woodbury Lakes Shoping Center, Office Place, Medtronic, Target Direct