32BJ president reacts to layoff threats

George Richezza, president of 32BJ SEIU District 1201, issued a statement today in response to the district's plan to layoff 848 facilities and transportation workers.

The union, which is comprised of more than 3,000 public school aides, bus drivers, attendants, mechanics, building engineers, cleaners and maintenance workers, rejected to making concessions. The union is seeking to save $75 million in givebacks from its unions.

“By putting more than 1,100 men and women out of work, the Philadelphia School District will not just make life more difficult for these workers and their families, but will inflict harm on our schools and our struggling economy. Eliminating nearly half of the workforce that supports our school system – including all school bus drivers -- would decimate our schools’ ability to function and ensure our kids safety. Philadelphia students are already paying the price after the Ackerman administration turned our schools’ finances upside down, and they deserve better than this.”

“We call on the District to rescind this unconscionable and reckless move, and meet with us in the best interests of our city to avoid what would amount to a devastating blow to our school system.”