November 24, 2015
By Steve Wishnia
About 2,000 workers at seven U.S. airports staged a one-day strike Nov. 18-19, protesting low wages and unfair labor practices. Plane cleaners, baggage handlers, and other workers employed by subcontractors walked out at Kennedy and LaGuardia in New York, Newark Liberty, Chicago O'Hare, Boston, Philadelphia and Fort Lauderdale airports.
In Philadelphia, more than 200 nonunion workers rallied outside the airport’s Terminal B. The city’s lease agreements with airlines were supposed to enforce a $12-an-hour “living wage” minimum enacted last year, but about 300 wheelchair attendants are still paid less, City Councilmember Maria Quinones-Sanchez told the rally. “We are talking with American Airlines, whose position is 'We're not getting involved with our subcontractors and how they deal with their employees,’” she said. “In the lease agreement with the airlines, they were going to begin to help us police their subcontractors to make sure that they were in compliance.”Read more