Anheuser-Busch Cleaners Out of Jobs

Tue Nov 3, 2009 3:20pm EST

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Company Looks the Other Way as Long-Standing Workers Are Replaced

NEWARK, N.J., Nov. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Despite years of dedicated service at
Anheuser-Busch's Newark brewery, the long-standing brewery cleaners found
themselves without a job yesterday.  The company's new cleaning contractors
have refused to accept job applications from these men and women.  

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20020918/SEIULOGO) 

"Doesn't Anheuser-Busch get that we need to feed our families?" asked Luci
Peralta, a cleaner who has worked at the brewery for six years.  "With no
income, I don't know how I'll put food on the table and make our house
payments."

Although Anheuser-Busch's reported revenues were more than $23.5 million in
2008, the company has contracted with what seem to be low-end cleaning
companies.  Workers have been told the companies, US Metro and NJ-based Dawn
Brite, will keep costs down by paying close to minimum wage and providing few,
if any, benefits.  

"We cannot watch multi-national corporations like Anheuser-Busch replace good
Newark jobs with dead-end, low-wage jobs that force our families into
poverty," said Kevin Brown, 32BJ New Jersey Director. "If Anheuser-Busch was
truly committed to local communities and working people, the company would not
stand by while the hard-working cleaners struggle to support their families."

The workers' union, 32BJ SEIU, has contacted Anheuser-Busch about the job
loss, but the company has refused to intervene on the workers' behalf.  

The brewery cleaners were earning $13.30 an hour and receiving employer-paid
family health care - the same rate as most other area cleaners.  Under a
contract with 32BJ SEIU, many real estate owners and cleaning companies in New
Jersey have agreed to standard wages and benefits for thousands of commercial
cleaners in the state.  

With more than 100,000 members in seven states and Washington, DC, including
8,000 in New Jersey, 32BJ is the largest property services union in the
country.


SOURCE  SEIU Local 32BJ

Lynsey Kryzwick, +1-212-388-3696, +1-917-683-4474, or Matt Nerzig,
+1-212-539-2882, both of SEIU Local 32BJ
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