March 09, 2012

FRANKLY, KISSES WON'T FEED THE KIDS

Mar 9, 2012

A woman Frank Lowy blew kisses to at last year’s Westfield AGM will today (FRIDAY) join a protest against his company at Mt Druitt.

Azzra Al-delemi says Westfield has had long enough to deliver on the “fair wage” promises of its billionaire founder.

“We went to the AGM and presented Mr Lowy with roses in good faith,” she said. “He got plenty of positive media for his promise to meet cleaners and discuss our issues but words are cheap. As far as I know, we haven’t heard from Westfield since.

“People like me are still trying to raise our children on $16.57 an hour. It’s not possible and it’s not fair.”

The mother of two says Westfield has a responsibility to the people who work hard to clean and maintain its properties.

United Voice NSW secretary, Mark Boyd, says cleaning contractors constantly point the finger at shopping centre owners like Westfield for low wages and cuts to working hours.

He says only last month contractor Spotless cut another 80 hours out of the Mt Druitt shopping centre contract and blamed Westfield.

“Wages and job security are under constant attack in the sector and property owners can no longer just shrug their shoulders and pretend it has nothing to do with them,” Mr Boyd said.

“They own the properties and they let the contracts. We need to take wages out of competition so these cleaning contractors can compete of the basis of the standard of service they provide.”

United Voice is asking Westfield to sit down and talk about factoring in a “living wage” when it lets shopping centre cleaning contracts.

Azzra Al-delemmi will be available for interview at the Clean Start Community Protest, Westfield Mt Druitt, at 12 noon on Friday.

Further information: United Voice media officer, Jim Marr, 0448 912892

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