Striking Facebook janitors in the Bay Area returned to work this week after their unions reached an agreement with their employer, a vendor for Facebook parent Meta Platforms Inc., late Sunday night.
The two unions said Tuesday that the vendor, SBM Management Services, is hiring some janitors back after laying off more than 100 last month, and will provide severance pay to laid-off janitors.
About 250 janitors who work in San Francisco; at Meta’s
Menlo Park, Calif., headquarters; and at the company’s offices in Burlingame, Calif., went on strike last week. The janitors were protesting the layoffs, the resulting working conditions and SBM’s use of nonunion temporary workers. They went back to work Monday.
In San Francisco, where Meta has two offices, all 25 laid-off janitors were able to get their jobs back, said Olga Miranda, president of Service Employees International Union Local 87, on Tuesday.
“We consider this a victory in a David and Goliath fight,” Miranda told MarketWatch. “I want to thank Meta and SBM for doing right by our families.”
The SEIU–United Service Workers West, which represents about 200 janitors at headquarters in Menlo Park and the company’s offices in Burlingame, said that it was able to secure “a reduction in the number of workers that will be laid off,” and that the ones who aren’t getting their jobs back will get severance packages. The union did not specify how many of the janitors it represents are getting their jobs back.
“I’m relieved to know that SBM finally understood that is not safe for janitors to work unreasonably longer hours and tougher workloads that would only put our health and safety at risk,” said Teresa Barrios, an SEIU-USWW executive board member and janitor and shop steward at Meta, in a statement Tuesday.
SBM did not return requests for comment about the agreement reached with the unions.
Meta, which uses vendors for its janitors and other service workers and does not employ them directly, did not immediately return a request for comment about the end of the strike.
The janitor layoffs and strike came as Meta is reportedly looking to reduce costs, including by cutting some of the workforce it employs directly.
Previously: As Silicon Valley looks to cut back, service workers fear they could be first to go