Membership of AFSCME District Council 33 Praised for Blizzard Cleanup Efforts; Budget Cuts Blamed for Limiting Services

Dec 21, 2009, 13:34 ET from AFSCME District Council 33

PHILADELPHIA, Dec. 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pete Matthews, the President of AFSCME District Council 33, the City Municipal Workers Union, today praised the members of District Council 33 for their "tireless and devoted effort" to help fellow Philadelphians deal with the massive blizzard that buried the City in a record snowfall over the weekend. He noted that the membership from all departments in the City including the Parking Authority didn't hesitate when called upon to serve their fellow Philadelphians.

"Even though the members of District Council 33 have been working under a contract that expired last June, they still showed their concern for the citizens of Philadelphia by stepping up to deliver a tireless and devoted effort over the last two days," said Matthews. "As understaffed as the City is in all departments, it is noteworthy that District Council 33 members are the ones responsible for doing the work necessary to get the City up and running again."

Many citizens in neighborhoods around the City are angered that they are not receiving City services in a timely manner. This is especially noticeable after a major weather event like the current snowstorm. Matthews noted that the number of City worker cut backs over the past several years, coupled with reductions in funding for key departments, was the cause of the City's inability to clear many neighborhood streets.

"If it was up to the members of District Council 33, we would be out there in every neighborhood in the City right now making sure that our friends, neighbors and family were able to dig out and get back to normal, but that is not our call," said Matthews. "We can only do so much when staffing levels and equipment and supply budget have already been cut to the bone. Given those serious limitations, it is remarkable how much is being done by so few City workers."

SOURCE AFSCME District Council 33