MCSA-PSEA to hold solidarity rally before tonight’s school board meeting

LEWISTOWN – A solidarity rally in support of the Mifflin County School District’s custodians and cafeteria workers will be held tonight at a special meeting of the MCSD Board of Directors. The rally’s message will be “Keep jobs and taxes in Mifflin County.”

The meeting, scheduled for 7:30 p.m., will be for the school board to vote for a second time on the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board fact finding report.

According to a press release from the Mifflin County Support Association-PSEA, the school board requested the fact finding to help settle contract issues between the school board and the support association, which represents the custodians and cafeteria employees. If both sides approve the fact-finding report, it will become the basis for a new contract, the release states.

According to the release, the school board has threatened to no longer employ the district’s custodians and cafeteria workers and subcontract the work to a non-local for-profit company if the union does not meet its required concessions.

Union leaders say they have already agreed to wage cuts of 1.6 percent and a 20 percent reduction in salaries for new hires.

The MCSA voted to approve the fact-finder’s report. The school board voted to reject it at its May 23 meeting. The Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board requires a second vote by both sides within 10 days after the report is released.

The union contends that if the district hires the subcontractor, local residents will be fired and then if they are rehired by the company, they will have their wages and benefits cut.