Who: Workers and community members at CityPoint Brooklyn; 32BJ members and leaders; Broooklyn elected officials
What: Rally for Good Jobs at CityPoint Brooklyn
When: Tuesday, August 2 at 5:30PM
Where: Albee Square Plaza at Corner of Bond & Fulton in Brooklyn
NEW YORK– The workers at Acadia Realty Trust’s CityPoint Brooklyn residential building help make the building home for tenants and are proud to be part of the community but Acadia uses a contractor called Kent Services that employs the workers at CityPoint at substandard wages– in fact workers just next door make almost 50% more than they do.
That’s why workers are standing up, with support from CityPoint tenants and elected officials to demand good jobs so that the workers can afford to live in Brooklyn too.
Acadia has marketed this building to tenants as an authentic “Brooklyn Born” development but some workers are making as little as $12 an hour and they can barely support their families in Brooklyn. Instead of putting profits before people, Acadia should ensure its contractor pays workers family-sustaining wages.
The standard pay for residential workers starts at about $17 an hour and goes up to about $23 for workers with more experience and includes family health care, retirement and other benefits. These are the kinds of jobs Downtown Brooklyn and all of New York City needs.
Acadia Realty says that CityPoint is “By Brooklyn For Brooklyn” but that doesn’t mean what they think it means. Brooklyn isn’t just a bunch of buildings and businesses. The people who live and work in this borough are who make Brooklyn, Brooklyn.
Quetcy Ramirez, the lead concierge at the building and a lifelong Brooklyn resident says that her pay is so low she and her husband have to live with her mother-in-law.
“It’s hard to get by even with two incomes,” Ramirez says. “We can’t afford to help out our kids and grandkids. We’re Brooklyn-born people and Acadia should care about us too—not just it’s business.”
We can’t build our way out of the affordable housing crisis. We need to make sure that people are earning enough to afford housing. Good jobs and affordable housing go hand in hand. Creating poverty wage jobs – like Acadia is doing at City Point – is not going to cut it.
It’s time Acadia starts caring about people, not just profits!
With 155,000 members in eleven states and Washington, D.C., including 70,000 in New York City, 32BJ SEIU is the largest property service workers union in the country.