MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Twin Cities janitors are making final preparations for Wednesday’s one-day strike.
Several dozen gathered Tuesday in a large meeting room in the Thorpe Building in northeast Minneapolis to arrange leadership at the two picket areas.READ MORE: Kim Potter's Trial In Daunte Wright's Death Begins Wednesday: Here's How To Watch
“There’s no happiness in there,” said Brahim Kone, SEIU Local 26 executive board member.
Kone is also a janitor at the state Department of Human Services in Saint Paul.
The plan is to have one group at the Securian Building in downtown Saint Paul. The other picket area is at the US Bank plaza in downtown Minneapolis.
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“Eleven bargaining sessions (and) not a single proposal have been agreed on,” Kone said. “Kind of surprised, and a little disappointed.”
The union represents 4,000, both full-time and part-time, employed at about a dozen large firms around the Twin Cities. Talks between the two sides started in October, but they say there’s been little movement since then. Union members say wages and worload issues are at the center of the dispute.
The walkout starts with the Tuesday night late shift, with everyone going back to work on Thursday.
“One day is a signal that we’re sending to the companies that we are frustrated about what’s going on,” Kone said. “We’re going to go one day and try to show that we’re willing to get something done. We want to negotiate in good faith, but at the same time we want to show that if the negotiations stall we have to take different steps.”
The next round of talks is Monday.MORE NEWS: Undefeated Gophers Getting Along Just Fine Under Ben Johnson
The union wants across-the-board pay raises and more paid sick days. Negotiators for the companies reportedly have offered to raise wages for full-time employees to more than $15 an hour for the length of a typical three-year contract.