A Twin Cities worker center is coordinating a campaign – including writing letters to Santa Claus – to support a retail janitor whom they say was fired for her organizing activity.
The holiday-themed effort puts the spotlight on Macy’s, the department store where Duniyo Hussein worked as a janitor. She was employed by a subcontractor hired by Macy’s to clean its stores.
“Retail workers and contracted retail janitors bear the burden of increased workload and erratic schedules during holiday sales at retail stores, yet are not fairly compensated for these changes,” said CTUL, Centro de Trabajadores Unidos en Lucha/Center of Workers United in Struggle.
“Duniyo Hussein, one of the leaders in the Campaign for Justice in Retail Cleaning, works for Capital cleaning Macy's in Mall of America. In late November, less than two weeks after leading a one-day strike with her co-workers, and less than two hours after complaining to her supervisor about workload for workers over the holiday season, Duniyo was fired.
“Workers and community allies are planning a series of actions to make clear that workers deserve fair treatment during this time of year, and ALL YEAR long.”
Friday, Dec. 11
Caroling through Minneapolis Skyways with the Twin Cities Labor Chorus
Meet at 700 Nicollet Mall at 4 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 19
Action at Macy’s in downtown Minneapolis
Meet at 700 Nicollet Mall at 3:30 p.m.
Letters to Santa Claus, asking for worker justice for Christmas:
Click on this link to print a sample letter and write your message to Santa. For example: "This Christmas I would like... $15 an hour for all workers; Paid sick days for all workers; Fair schedules for all workers; An end to retaliation against workers, and for Duniyo to get her job back.
Letter writers are asked to take a picture of themselves holding the letter and e-mail it to Merle Payne at CTUL.
The letters will be delivered to Santa in the Santaland on Macy’s 8th floor during the Dec. 19 demonstration.
Workers are organizing through unions and other organizations to improve their lives. Union representation provides a voice on the job and the opportunity to improve wages, benefits and working conditions.