After an extended negotiation period between the Realty Advisory Board of Labor Relations -- landlords -- and union Local 32BJ SEIU -- doormen, superintendents, handymen and porters -- residents of the 3,300 buildings those union members service no longer need to fear a workers' strike.
The Realty Advisory Board and the 30,000 employees of the union settled a tentative contract to be signed on April 20th that would raise a typical union member's salary incrementally over the four year period of the contract to $49,402 from $44,389. That is a 2.71 percent increase per year and ultimately an 11.3 percent pay raise by the fourth year.
The backlash against the current pay structure was ignited by the influx of residential luxury new developments where even starting prices are guaranteed to have a multi-million dollar price tag. Union members want their salaries to be cohesive with the growing economy and booming real estate market of New York City, but they also want to be able to "continue to live in the city where they work," according to the New York Times. There is no doubt the employees of these Manhattan buildings feel a connection to the residents they serve, but they should also feel at home in their city when on the job.
The connection is shared, as the residents feel an especially close bond with their doormen, whose even smallest gesture, such as a smile or greeting at the door after a long day, goes along way. Given this shared commitment, you wonder how many doormen would have left their post had a settlement not been met before the Sunday deadline -- the union of residential workers hasn't gone on active strike since 1991.
What is your favorite experience with an employee of the building you live in? Leave your stories below, I'd love to hear them.
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