As of January 1, 2018, all janitorial employers in the State of Oregon were required to obtain a license to provide janitorial services. Oregon janitors in SEIU Local 49 filed a lawsuit in September 2019 against Expresso Building Services for failure to obtain a license as a janitorial employer. SEIU alleged that Expresso continued to operate as an unlicensed janitorial contractor in Oregon for nearly 18 months, only applying after receiving an inquiry from state investigators who were following up on an anonymous complaint.
As tenants question returning to the office, your choice in a janitorial vendor can have a big impact. Say good-bye to the shared candy bowl and ping pong table with shared paddles. Beyond office redesign many tenants first question is about janitorial service. As tenants mull over scope and frequency of cleaning, another thing to keep in mind is the benefits that your janitor may or may not have.
In the midst of a pandemic, Portland-area Union janitors and their supporters are calling on Standard Insurance to invest in frontline workers. While improvements and protections for union janitors and tenants improve, circumstances get worse for non-union janitors. Union janitors win a contract extension that addresses concerns during this pandemic that includes a wage increase, expanded paid sick leave and COVID protections. Meaning building owners and tenants who use Union companies can feel proud of the protections for frontline workers cleaning their facilities.
In a win-win for all Oregonians, the Oregon Investment Council (OIC) unanimously approved March 11 an updated Responsible Contractor Policy (RCP), that helps protect property services workers (janitors and security officers), commercial real estate tenants and participants in the Oregon Public Employees Retirement System (OPERS) from irresponsible contracting practices in commercial real estate markets across the country.
Shorenstein Realty Services, Unico Properties, Nike, and Intel are stepping up to ensure that the essential workers who clean their properties—janitors—are able to support their families during this crisis and are helping to mitigate the health risks and financial impacts of COVID-19 by investing in responsible union janitorial contractors.