Centre College’s Facilities Management Department strikes for higher wages

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DANVILLE, Ky. (LEX 18) — Centre College’s Facilities Management Department gathered around the school’s bell tower; their voices rang out, calling for a change as they went on strike to call for higher wages.

One of the school’s custodians, Jayden Sims, said, “This has been a constant issue even before I got here it’s been talked about. They brought it to their attention before. And they just keep on passing it down saying it’s not in the budget, but they have these budgets for all these new buildings but not a budget to give us a raise more than $0.39.”

The group came out to strike against the department’s wages. Another employee, Dylan Monnett, who’s been a custodian at the college for a couple of years, explained that he doesn’t believe their wages are livable.

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“Bills are going higher, rent’s getting higher, food, everything. Everything you can think of in this world is getting higher,” Monnett said.

The group on strike included custodians, maintenance workers, groundskeepers, painters and more. Custodian Zack Tarter said they’d like to see an increase of $2 an hour.

“They only pay $13 an hour here. So, we’re hoping our influence today will influence about $15 an hour,” explained Tarter. “That would may be help everybody. And it would not only make us happy, it would bring more people from outside in the door.”

The group took their protest onto Main Street in Danville, receiving honks and support from cars passing by.

LEX 18 reached out to the school who sent the following statement:

“We deeply value our facilities employees and are committed to meeting with them to discuss their concerns. We understand the critical role their contributions play in our mission of preparing students for lives of learning, leadership and service. Our goal is always to support our employees and the continued success of the college.”

The group on strike said that they want the school to acknowledge how important their roles are on campus.

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“If it weren’t for the custodians, no area would be clean. It would just be a huge mess, shared Sims. “If it wasn’t for maintenance, all these problems on campus, there would be a lot of broken a/c’s, which affects students in their dorm rooms. And like maintenance like in classrooms, the projectors and stuff — if we didn’t have maintenance, they couldn’t fix that and couldn’t learn on that. And then grounds, like if the campus wasn’t kept nice, then no one would want to go here for real.”

“I just think, if you feel like you need to step up, step up because nothing’s gonna get done if you don’t. You know that’s important; people’s voices are important,” Monnett explained.





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