NEW YORK — Industrial laundry workers who wash linen for New York’s hotels, hospitals and restaurants recently voted to ratify a new master contract among 14 laundries in the New York metro area, reports the Laundry, Distribution and Food Service Joint Board, Workers United/Service Employees International Union (SEIU).
The contract includes significant wage gains for laundry workers, a majority of whom are African-American women and Latina immigrants, and will also grant them continued free employer-paid individual medical, dental and vision insurance and a pension, the union says. Laundry workers will be part of one multi-employer contract, which sets the standards for a majority of laundries in the New York metro area.
Wilfredo Larancuent, regional manager of the Laundry, Distribution and Food Service Joint Board, Workers United/SEIU, says he’s proud of what the group has accomplished. “This contract makes real improvements for laundry workers and their families and continues to raise standards for the industry.”
Elected worker representatives from the laundries bargained the contract with employer representatives for more than a month, the group says. A strike vote was held at the laundries, but the contract was settled prior to the strike deadline.