Cupich raises concerns about city labor measure for charities

hand placing ballot in box
Ballot in a box Photo credit Getty Images

(WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The Chicago Archdiocese and some charitable groups have concerns about a proposed Chicago ordinance.

In a letter to the mayor and city council, Cardinal Blase Cupich expressed concerns about the measure -- the Human Service Workforce Advancement Ordinance -- which would make it easier for workers at non-profits to join unions.

Cupich said the church supports the goals of organized labor, including worker dignity and livable wages. But the ordinance could hamper the work of groups like Catholic Charities.

Catholic Charities President and CEO Sally Blount said the proposal, which dates back to pre-pandemic times, is not the right solution for employees of charitable groups.

"This is not time for a one-size-fits-all solution. We are talking about a million to a million and a half people in the city of Chicago who tap [into] the services of Catholic Charities and our peer providers on a daily, if not weekly or monthly, basis. These people need us to be very careful in crafting the right solution on their behalf."

Blount adds her organization gave an 8 percent raise to frontline workers.

“We literally had to make a 'Sophie's Choice' decision. We had to agree not to serve as many clients,” she said, referring to a decision that has negative consequences either way.

It's not clear where the Human Service Workforce Advancement Ordinance stands in terms of possible passage at City Hall.

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Featured Image Photo Credit: Getty Images