Bad news for anyone hoping to ride out the pending Local 32 BJ strike by just ordering out more than usual: the grocery delivery service Fresh Direct will refuse to enter buildings whose doormen are on strike. The unionized drivers of Local 348S want to show solidarity with building workers, and will make anyone who orders groceries to those buildings meet them on the street and carry the boxes themselves. Union leader Eduardo Cordero told the Times, “We will not be putting our members in any kind of danger or any situation that would provoke trouble... At the same time, the company still has to provide a service."
Negotiations resumed at 9 a.m. this morning between the workers union and the Realty Advisory Board, and if no agreement is made by midnight tonight when the contract runs out, over 30,000 building workers will strike. More specifics are coming out about what the union is looking for in a new contract. 32BJ President Mike Fishman told NY1 he wants members to pay a lower health premium (RAB wants them to pay 10%,) and earn living wages. And Matt Nerzig, 32BJ Chief Spokesman, told us, "The time has come for the $587 billion real estate industry to recognize that workers making $40,000 a year need wage increases to make ends meet in New York City."
Though the union is prepared to strike, not every worker is looking forward to it. Doorman Carlos Pellecier said that while he would like higher wages, he doesn't want to risk his livelihood by walking out. "Cost of living keeps going up. The rent does not wait, even if you are not getting a cost-of-living raise," he told the Daily News. "The rent needs to be paid. Con Edison needs to be paid." He may also be worried about being replaced. Security USA, a non-union company, has said they are more than willing to provide services to buildings in the event of a strike. “ We are not here to replace anyone," said one security guard. "We are here to provide a service in the absence of the regular staff." Yes, a service, just like the service skin performs when it forms a hard surface to stop bleeding from a wound.