Miami fights the power

August 12, 2005

(From the BlogWood mailbag)

Ever heard of the Continental Management Group? They run most of South Florida’s condos. If you live in Miami, chances are they run yours.

Well, Continental’s greed and poor service has gotten so bad, it’s provoked this hilarious new music video:

Screw This Condo

The flash is funny, but what’s going on in the lucrative luxury condo industry in South Florida is not. Leydis Borrero cleaned condos for ten years for Continental Group, the largest employer of condo workers. Her reward for a decade of loyalty and hard work was a paycheck of $7.25 an hour with no health insurance for herself or her four kids. When she joined together with her co-workers for a living wage, training opportunities, and family health care, Continental fired her.

Condo workers are finding out that they have a lot in common with condo residents who also get taken for a ride by property management companies like Continental. Fees keep going up, and Continental’s parent company makes money by “cross-selling” additional services such as painting, landscaping, and pool cleaning.

Elected public officials, condo residents, and condo workers have been holding public forums and pushing for legislation requiring licensing, fiscal and ethical standards, and full disclosure of contracting relationships.

That’s the new union movement. Giving a voice to the voiceless. Uniting with community groups for everyone’s benefit. And making sure that working people have the tools and training they need to provide a service they can be proud of.

Check it out at Screw This Condo and CleanCondos.org.

For more information about how we’re working with residents and other public officials to reform the condo industry, go to CleanCondos.org

To see what else the labor movement in south florida has been doing go to:

SEIU Local 11

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