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California Custodians Rally for Higher Pay Due to Inflation

April 5, 2022

More than 1,000 public service workers, including custodial service workers, rallied in downtown Los Angeles last week demanding pay increases because of mounting inflation, reports Courthouse News Services.

Service Employees International Union Local 721 represents roughly 55,000 public employees in Los Angeles County, including custodians, social workers, nurses, clerks, librarians, and more. Contracts were set to expire midnight Friday, April 1. Union officials say they’ve been offered a 2% raise and as of Monday negotiations were still ongoing.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the inflation rate for the 12-month period ending in February was 7.9% before seasonal adjustment, the highest rate of inflation since 1981.

Union leaders said they’re prepared to strike if their demands aren’t met. A spokesperson for the union said a strike could be between two and four weeks away, Courthouse News Services reports.

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