Phila U. security workers protest McGinn pay cuts and working conditions

A group of Philadelphia University security officers employed by McGinn Security rallied in East Falls this week for better wages and working conditions. 

They gathered under umbrellas on Henry Avenue and School House Lane on Tuesday holding signs that read “Respect Security” and “We love the [Phila U.] Rams but mistreating workers is a bunch of bull.” 

Out of the 50 McGinn security officers at Philadelphia University, 40 have signed a petition, which demands “better pay, benefits, and respect we deserve.”

“I think the rally went pretty well,” said overnight security worker Josette Bates. “They know we are serious at this point.” 

Last June, Philadelphia University switched from AlliedBarton to a new security contractor, McGinn Security, which resulted in an immediate $3-per-hour pay cut.

“I can’t pay any of my bills. My son plays sports and I can’t afford the equipment anymore,” said Bates.

McGinn Security did not return a NewsWorks call for comment.

The working conditions at McGinn are also being protested by employees. Bates said McGinn security officers work eight-hour shifts without proper bathroom breaks. Security officer Erica Cody said her 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. shift this week didn’t include a break.

“No benefits, no health, no anything,” Bates said. “I should get a different pay since I work at night.”

The pay cut has impacted Cody, as well. She said she had to take her son out of childcare because she could no longer afford it, and she struggles to find someone to watch her son each week while she works.

“One time, I had to miss a shift to take care of my sick one-year-old. McGinn threatened me with a writeup, and then I had to travel all the way to Delaware Ave. to sign it,” she said. “They didn’t even pay for my travel.”

“We’re just not being appreciated for the work we’re doing,” Bates added. “I deal with break-ins. I’m putting my life at risk for these kids. I do a lot, and for them to take us from $12.50 to $9.50 is not fair.”

Philadelphia University declined to comment on this story. 

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