November 26, 2015
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Nine nonunion workers who participated in a 24-hour strike at seven airports to demand better pay and conditions were fired when they tried to return to their jobs Nov.
19. At John F. Kennedy Airport in Queens, JetBlue contractor Ultimate Aircraft fired six cabin cleaners who had participated in the walkout. At Newark Liberty, PrimeFlight Aviation Services fired three of the 40 employees who returned to work for the 10 p.m. shift, claiming that they had been absent without calling in.
“We’re going to file a complaint,” said Kevin Brown, New Jersey state director of SEIU Local 32BJ, which organized the strike. He said the firings were illegal under federal labor laws, because the three workers had signed papers notifying the company they were going on strike. One of the three is homeless; the strikers, many of whom make the New Jersey minimum of $8.38 an hour, were demanding a raise to $15.