MTA Board Member: I'd Vote to Terminate GCS Contract

GCS Worker Esther Mota Speaks Truth to Power at the MTA Board Meeting
GCS Worker Esther Mota Speaks Truth to Power at the MTA Board Meeting


OCTOBER 28 -- An irate MTA board member came out swinging Wednesday on behalf of Local 100 members suffering under draconian management and conditions at the Access-A-Ride call center in Queens.

Board member Charles Moerdler said he was poised to introduce a motion ending the MTA’s contract with Global Contact Services, or GCS.

“I’ve heard enough today to demonstrate to my view there is no good faith on part of this vendor,” Moerdler said at the board’s monthly meeting in Lower Manhattan. “The pay situation is illegal if it is as represented [by workers]. The working conditions are intolerable.”

Moerdler made his comments after about a dozen TWU Local 100 members and organizers, including Dylan Valle, testified about their experiences with the South Carolina-based GCS - including being bitten by bedbugs, getting fired for supporting the union and receiving wages lower than promised.

“We will fight this out until the end,” Local 100 President John Samuelsen said. “We will defend these workers with all resources available to us.”

The workers’ appearance at the meeting was the latest move in a Local 100 campaign to improve working conditions and pay for the approximately 600 Access-A-Ride Call Center workers.

Agitation by Local 100 prompted MTA Inspector General Barry Kluger and MTA Auditor General Michael Mike Fucilli to launch a review of GCS operations, its contract, and the workers’ complaints. That review began in September, MTA board Chairman Tom Prendergast said at the Wednesday meeting.

“It’s essential that they do it right and look through everything,” Prendergast said.

Still, Prendergast made it clear he expected a report within a month or two. “We need to do it as quickly as possible and bring these matters to a head in terms of what actions we may need to take,” the chairman said.

MTA board member Mitch Pally said workers should know the board is taking their complaints seriously.

GCS staffer and Local 100 organizer Esther Mota thanked the board for their efforts.

“We greatly appreciate your attention,” Mota said. “We’re there to work. We love what we do. We just want you to help us make it easier to do our jobs, live within our city and help our community.”