SEIU Local 2

SEIU Local 2

March 25, 2011 14:45 ET

Media Advisory: Brentwood Town Centre Workers and Supporters to Rally at Mall

Good Jobs for Burnaby Website Launched to Protect Jobs

--RALLY TOMORROW--

BURNABY, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 25, 2011) - A group of cleaners and maintenance workers will rally tomorrow to defend their jobs at the Brentwood Town Centre mall. The workers are to be laid off next week.

WHAT: Rally to Protect Good Jobs for Burnaby & Defend Jobs at Brentwood

WHEN: Saturday March 26 @ 12 PM

WHERE: Gather at North side of the Brentwood Skytrain Station

SPEAKERS:

  • Raj Chouhan – MLA Burnaby-Edmonds
  • Pietro Calendino - Burnaby City Council
  • Brentwood Town Centre workers
  • Lougheed Town Centre worker

Photo-Op: Scores or workers and supporters with placards, leafleting public, elected leaders.

For more information please visit www.GoodJobsforBurnaby.org.

Background:

The entire Brentwood Town Centre cleaning and maintenance staff are facing layoffs next week. Many of them are long time employees at the mall.

"I am less than four years away from retirement," says Tony Vaz. "What am I going to do?" Vaz is one of the 17 workers who have been left scrambling. He started working at Brentwood Town Centre almost 39 years ago when he was 22 years old. He has seen about seven management and cleaning companies come and go, but says he has never seen anything like this.

The staff at the Brentwood Town Centre face these job losses because Shape Properties, who own a 50% share of the mall, are taking over the mall management and plan on contracting out the cleaning and maintenance work, without making any commitments to the existing employees.

It appears a similar situation is developing at the Lougheed Town Centre and concern is spreading.

Support for the workers is building as the Burnaby community realizes what is happening. Following a statement earlier this week by Harry Bains (MLA Surrey-Newton), Burnaby City Councillor Pietro Calendino said, "Hard-working folks like Tony Vaz, who has worked at the Brentwood Town Centre for almost 39 years and is less than four years away from retirement, should not be treated this way."

Calendino, who has lived in Burnaby for 34 years, believes Shape Properties needs to behave like a responsible corporate citizen and ensure the seventeen workers currently cleaning and maintaining the mall retain their jobs and conditions when they contract out the work.

GoodJobsforBurnaby.org is a new website that has been launched to raise awareness in Burnaby.

For more information visit www.GoodJobsforBurnaby.org.

The Service Employees International Union is the largest and fastest growing union in North America, with 100,000 workers in Canada and two million workers across Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico.

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