FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 21, 2016
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NYCHA Announces Historic Changes to Operations With New Expanded Service Hours
After 50 years, the Authority will fundamentally improve customer service for residents with earlier, later and Saturday hours; Unveils Flexible Operations (FlexOps): Expanded Service Hours
94% of NYCHA residents want repairs, maintenance and cleaning outside of traditional business hours
NEW YORK—The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) today announced the launch of Flexible Operations (FlexOps): Expanded Service Hours, a transformative initiative to extend NYCHA’s hours for completing routine repairs, cleaning common areas, and scheduling meetings with property management. This initiative will create a new, staggered shift schedule for frontline staff, including caretakers, maintenance works, property managers and support staff. A recent survey of more than 1,400 public housing residents, including 58 resident leaders, found that 94 percent supported extending NYCHA’s service hours beyond the traditional 8:00 am – 4:30 pm hours.
As part of NextGeneration NYCHA, the Authority’s 10 year strategic plan, FlexOps will fundamentally improve residents’ quality of life. The reforms mean residents will see cleaner public spaces when they leave for work and when they come home. Residents will be able to schedule routine repairs for the early evening after they’re home from work. And with office hours on Saturdays, residents can schedule appointments to meet with their property management staff and that staff can accomplish administrative duties to set the week up for success.
Currently, NYCHA’s single shift, 8:00 am – 4:30 pm workday, which dates back to at least 1969—nearly 50 years ago—does not allow staff or residents to see improved conditions at NYCHA developments. FlexOps will create multiple work shifts, which will allow properties to operate from 6:00 am until 8:00 pm on weekdays and hold Saturday property management office hours for appointments and administrative duties.
“NYCHA’s residents have demanded more than business as usual—and we’ve heard them,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Our residents deserve the same fundamental services most New Yorkers take for granted. These reforms mean that when our residents walk out to work in the morning, it will be to a clean hallway and lobby. And they mean repairs will come sooner, because we can make them on a schedule that serves working families."
“If we genuinely want to create cleaner, safer and more connected communities, we must challenge ourselves to think differently about what it means to serve residents. It’s clear the last generation’s model is no longer working for this or future generations,” said NYCHA Chair & CEO Shola Olatoye. “FlexOps is transformational change; real change our residents will be able to see and feel. Our staff deserves a modern work schedule and our residents deserve the type of services any other New Yorker should expect.”
Watch NYCHA Chair & CEO Shola Olatoye’s FlexOps video message to residents here.
Employees will have the opportunity to benefit from a multiple shift structure, where some staff start/end their shift earlier in the day, whiles others start/end it later. NYCHA worked closely with Teamsters Local 237 over the last nine months on expanded service hours. Most recently, NYCHA worked on safety and security issues in partnership with the union and performed more than a dozen safety site assessments. These joint assessments evaluated lighting in public spaces (exterior and interior), doors, radio communications, and other access points. As a result, NYCHA developed and implemented security improvement plans to address assessment findings. NYCHA is also ensuring staff working the extended hours schedule will have the appropriate protective equipment, including a reflective vest, flashlight and operational radio.
Working within the terms of NYCHA’s labor contract, the Authority is launching expanded service hours, or FlexOps at 12 developments this spring. Initial phase sites include: