Originally published 10.12.09
by Jesse Muhammad
Some of us may see them as people who just keep our toilets clean and office areas spotless. Some of us may have even made fun of one at our school for pushing cleaning carts or you refuse to leave them a tip when you’re at a hotel.
But imagine one day without them. Yes, I am blogging about Janitors.
They have been called the “invisible workforce”. Not only because they work throughout the night while we’re sleeping but also they have been disrespected and taken for granted for far too long.
These are hard working people like you and on October 10 they sent a strong message in the Houston Galleria area that they are “invisible no more”. The Galleria is one of the wealthiest and busiest districts in Houston. This was also the site where a huge ‘Free Palestine’ rally took place.
What was the purpose of this convention and march?
In 2006, Houston janitors stood up to win better jobs for Houston after they were forced to go on strike. They won a collective bargaining agreement that gave them access to affordable healthcare and raised their wages to $7.75. Their contract expires in November.
With negotiations to improve more than 3,200 local jobs set to start at the end of the month, Houston janitors hosted this convention and march to call for an economy that works for everyone. Speakers included representatives from Service Employees International Union (SEIU), U.S. Representive Sheila Jackson- Lee and Houston Mayoral candidate Annise Parker.