Villanova University/SEIU Local 32BJ Bargaining Issues
August 26, 2013
The Local 32BJ Service Employees International Union (SEIU) at Villanova includes custodial, grounds and maintenance staff members. Villanova values its union employees and appreciates their important work and dedication to the University. The union’s contract ran from June 1, 2010 to May 31, 2013, and Villanova has extended the expiring contract twice since its end date May 31. The University has been negotiating in good faith with the union, and recently extended a final offer with hopes of achieving a mutually beneficial contract. While we cannot discuss all of the specifics of our union negotiations, it’s important to note that it is always imperative for us as a University to strike a balance between being good stewards of our resources and taking care of our employees – union and non-union.
Below is an overview of some of the key bargaining issues:
Custodial Wages. Villanova University has a fiduciary responsibility to our students, parents and donors to control all costs associated with a Villanova education, so we conduct periodic wage surveys. Maintenance and Grounds wages are in line with market rates, but Custodians are not. Most of our Custodians (80%) make $17.35/hour plus shift differential, when market rates in our area are $10.04 for housekeepers and $11.03 for floor technicians. That is a premium of 57% over market rates. Instead of proposing a reduction in wages for current employees, we are proposing new starting rates for future hires that are still above market rates: Custodian rate $11.25; Floor tech rate $12.25
Wage Increases. While we would prefer to have all Villanova employees receive the same wage increase each year, SEIU does not want to tie their wage increase to what the University offers the rest of its staff. Despite continued high national unemployment (8% in the metro Philadelphia area), an anemic economic recovery, and a national inflation rate last year of 1.8%, Villanova is offering the following generous pay increases: 2.5%, 2.25% and 2.0% over the next 3 years.
Villanova is an employer of choice in Philadelphia Marketplace
Villanova provides generous and consistent benefits to all employees
Villanova is committed to being good stewards of the significant investment made by our students and their families.
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