Cisco janitors plan protest at Stanford

Those following the saga of the 75 janitors laid off from Cisco might want to keep the date of May 21 in mind. That's when hundreds of janitors and their supporters will stage a protest at Stanford during the school's "Socially Responsible Supply Chain" conference at which two Cisco executives will speak.

The protesters will gather outside of Stanford's Bechtel Conference Center to protest the participation of Cisco executives Kevin Harrington and Brian Glazebrook. According to the janitors' union, Cisco recently ordered its contractor, ABM, to lay off more than 75 janitors at its corporate headquarters in San Jose. The janitors set up camp outside of Cisco's headquarters to protest those layoffs.

In a press release announcing the planned protest at Stanford, union vice president Andrea Dehlendorf said:

"By targeting of contracted janitors for layoffs while protecting its enormous profits, Cisco has created a textbook example of irresponsible corporate supply-chain economics." 

Last week, the janitors' union, SEIU-United Service Workers West, said it sent a letter to Harrington and Glazebrook pointing out that Cisco cannot credibly claim to be a socially responsible company while it withholds its prosperity from its contracted service workers. The letter called on Cisco to live up to its claims of having a "responsible supply chain" by reinstating the laid-off janitors, and engaging in workplace and wage improvement dialogue with the union.

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