(1973) Announcement of a press conference with Susie Bates who was challenging the City of Chicago's discriminatory employment practices. Bates was a a leader of the City Hall Janitress campaign.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Press Conference: October 23, 1973, 9:15 am, 189 W. Madison Street, Suite 900
(Editors Note: Gender discrimination in Chicago city employment was rampant before the advent of the women's movement. The reigning Daley political machine was very adroit at fending off challenges, but organizations like the Chicago Women's Liberation Union(CWLU) and the National Organization for Women (NOW) were not easily brushed aside.)
Susie Bates, a janitress at City Hall, will present her charges of sex discrimination against the City of Chicago ~ in a Public Hearing before the Fair Employment Practices Commission (FEPC). Preceding the hearing she will hold a press conference at 9:15 am at 189 West Madison Street, Suite 900.
At the press conference Ms. Bates will discuss:
- the specifics of her case against the City
- the relevance of her case to the women ‘s rights movement
- the importance of her case to Black working women
Ms. Bates is employed by the City of Chicago as a janitress. For 21 years she has worked side by side with janitors who do work equivalent to that of the women but are paid over $1000 more per year. In addition, women workers receive unequal pension benefits and are denied equal hiring and promotional opportunities.
Ms. Bates has been carrying out a campaign against the City of Chicago for over 1 year. Through the City budget hearing she attempted to have the discriminatory job titles (janitor and janitress) changed to one category, custodial worker, with a corresponding equalization in pay and benefits. The City’s response was to come up with the equally discriminatory classifications of custodial worker (men) and custodial assistant (women).
Thus far Ms. Bates’ case has received the endorsement of District Council 19 Of AFSCME the AFL-CIO State Women’s Caucus, and Black Labor Leaders of Operation PUSH. The support given to Ms. Bates’ case by these Black and labor organizations indicates the importance of her case to working women in Chicago.