GMU FACULTY SUPPORTS ITS CUSTODIANS
Professors at George Mason University in Fairfax are expressing solidarity with the custodial workers, who say that they were exposed to poor working conditions and have faced retribution for trying to organize. More than 220 people have signed a resolution by GMU’s chapter of the American Association of University Professors supporting the efforts of the workers. The resolution also called on the university to adopt a responsible contractor policy and to ensure that workers have appropriate and sufficient personal protective equipment to carry out their jobs.
Service Employees International Union filed a complaint last August on behalf of the janitors at the school, alleging that they have been targeted with “surveillance and interrogations about potential union activity by their employer, H&E Cleaning in Manassas,” according to the Associated Press. [See VoxFairfax, Around the Novahood, Aug. 31, 2020; https://wp.me/p9wDCF-1I7.]
The union settled the claim in January, as well as another complaint filed in November alleging “intimidation and harassment, intimidating workers, sabotaging work areas, making false accusations of theft, physically shoving a worker, and slow-walking a worker’s paycheck,” Bloomberg Law reported. The university president said in a statement last month that GMU has conducted an initial review of the complaints against contractor L.T. Services and its subcontractors. He called the accusations “troubling.”