Win-win for Residents and Public Service Workers in California

by Korey Hartwich  |  August 03, 2012

Privatization proponents claim it saves tax dollars to put public services in private control, and taxpayers sometimes learn too late that outsourcing costs more, provides weak services to the public, removes accountability and transparency from public processes, and puts local jobs and the environment at risk.

Well, San Diego city workers are standing up against efforts to irresponsibly privatize, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.  The workers there, including members of AFSCME Local 127 (Council 36), are holding politicians to a process that requires real savings from any contracting out. And in a recent open competition over operation of a landfill, city workers won. 

“Besides saving $2.7 million a year, keeping city workers on the job at Miramar Landfill means we all can breathe easier about the continued safe and efficient handling of more than a million tons of waste each year, hazardous materials and closed landfill sites,” points out Clare Crawford, the executive director of the Center on Policy Initiatives (CPI), a local nonprofit that advocates for working families.

That’s a win-win for citizens of San Diego and for workers. 

“Outsourcing city services doesn’t necessarily mean savings for taxpayers – in fact, it usually means the opposite,” says Franklin Roosevelt Lamberth, sanitation driver for the City of San Diego for over 17 years and a steward for Local 127.

“We don’t want to see money wasted because someone who is politically well-connected can score a pricey contract for city services. Residents should know that it is our union rights that allow us to stand up for efficiency and accountability to the public.”

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