FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
News from Progress Michigan
June 15, 2016
History Shows EMU Should Not Privatize Food Services
Outsourcing public jobs to private, for-profit companies has proven problematic
YPSILANTI — Progress Michigan is urging the Eastern Michigan Board of Regents to not privatize the university’s food service. The board is considering Chartwells, a for-profit corporation based overseas in the United Kingdom, to feed its students. Privatization has been disastrous across the state in schools, hospital and prisons.
Gov. Rick Snyder, who has orchestrated failed privatization schemes throughout Michigan, including the failed Aramark contract in state prisons and the controversial outsourcing of care at the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans, appointed seven of the eight Regents on the board.
“It’s not surprising that the board is considering privatization when all but one of the members was appointed by Gov. Snyder, but his bottom-line focused governing culture should not be what guides the decisions of EMU. It will only lead to problems like we’ve seen time and again across the state,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan. “Republican budget cuts to higher education have forced our public universities to raise tuition and cut programming for years, but jeopardizing the health of students and staff cannot be allowed to happen because of these austerity policies. EMU Regents would be wise to buck the trend set by Gov. Snyder and Michigan Republicans and seek another solution apart from privatization.”
Chartwells has a poor track record of food service contracts, including problems in the Taylor School District.