VCU’s clean­ing provider to lay off 134 em­ploy­ees as con­tract ends Jan. 31

New firm says it hopes to hire those los­ing jobs

Richmond Times-Dispatch - - BUSINESS - BY TAMMIE SMITH [email protected]­dis­patch.com (804) 649-6572

A jan­i­to­rial ser­vices provider for Vir­ginia Com­mon­wealth Univer­sity is lay­ing off 134 work­ers, but the re­place­ment cus­to­dial con­trac­tor hopes to hire those work­ers.

South­east Ser­vice Corp.’s con­tract to pro­vide clean­ing ser­vices on VCU’s aca­demic cam­pus, in­clud­ing dor­mi­to­ries, ends Jan. 31. Ac­cord­ing to a let­ter no­ti­fy­ing the Vir­ginia Em­ploy­ment Com­mis­sion of the lay­offs, one full-time su­per­vi­sor and 133 cus­to­dial work­ers are los­ing their jobs.

The new cus­to­dial con­trac­tor, Phoenixbased Olym­pus, hopes to hire those work­ers, said Olym­pus vice pres­i­dent Joshua Wood­worth.

Olym­pus pro­vides jan­i­to­rial ser­vices to higher ed­u­ca­tion in­sti­tu­tions.

“The most im­por­tant thing for us is to keep the peo­ple cur­rently there work­ing be­cause their in­sti­tu­tional knowl­edge is im­por­tant to us,” Wood­worth said.

“We’ve re­ceived some phone calls al­ready from cur­rent staff that were a lit­tle con­cerned about their jobs,” he said.

He said an Olym­pus pro­ject man­ager is al­ready on site at VCU hand­ing out fliers to work­ers and direct­ing them to the com­pany web­site where they can ap­ply. Wood­worth said Olym­pus is hav­ing a job re­cruit­ment fair on site Wed­nes­day.

New em­ploy­ees have to pass back­ground checks, and min­i­mum start­ing pay is about $10 an hour, Wood­worth said.

Olym­pus also pro­vides jan­i­to­rial ser­vices at East­ern Vir­ginia Med­i­cal School in Nor­folk, he said.

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