Dear Dr. Blouw:
I was saddened to read of the proposed out-sourcing of custodial jobs at Laurier. As you likely know, Waterloo Region is a provincial leader in the Living Wage initiative, and this action flies in the face of all that the literature tells us about stable, sufficient income as a determinant of health. Since these jobs are often performed by new immigrant women (often caring for young children) and others who are the vulnerable, the move would be particularly damaging.
I’ve done some quick math with the numbers I’ve seen, and estimate that this potential outsourcing pads would save WLu $1 per custodian hour, and pad the pockets of a private company with a $6.00 an hour/ per custodian profit, and leave the actual workers with $6 less per hour, roughly 1/3 of the current pay. I know my family would be hard hit by such a wage reduction, and I’m sure yours would as well.
As a well-resourced, progressive and socially-responsible University, I would hope that you will maintain these higher paying jobs for individuals trying to better themselves in this prosperous region.
Kim Hodgson , MHSc.