Oberlin College to lay off more than 100 in custodial, dining services

"Oberlin College’s president said Tuesday the college is taking steps to save up to $2 million annually by outsourcing more than 100 jobs currently held by unionized workers.

For a union representative who learned of the college’s proposal at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, just two hours before his membership would hear the plan, the news came like a punch in the gut, delivered in “bad faith.”

In a letter posted Tuesday on the college’s website, President Carmen Twillie Ambar said the college is hoping to save $2 million in salary and benefits by ‘formally considering contracting with outside vendors for dining and custodial services currently provided by college employees.’

An estimated 52 full-time dining employees and 56 full-time custodial employees would be affected, she wrote. The timeline for the steps the college is taking is this summer, Ambar wrote.

The affected employees are represented by the United Auto Workers. Ambar said the step the college is taking ‘is permitted under our UAW contract, and we will begin collective bargaining with the UAW in coming weeks to determine how best to move forward.’" …