WHAT: With the upcoming Thanksgiving travel season expected to be the busiest in recent memory, subcontracted airport workers at Newark Liberty International Airport will walk off the job tonight as part of the first-ever nationwide airport workers strike. In Newark, striking airport workers, their families and supporters will hold a public rally and press conference at Newark Liberty International Airport to call for better treatment and safe working conditions.
In the week before Thanksgiving, airport workers around the country who are unable to feed their families on the poverty wages they are paid will fight for $15 an hour, benefits and an end to various, local unfair labor practices by joining the first ever airport worker’s #Strike4Families.
WHO: The Newark airport workers, who clean United Airlines planes for contractor PrimeFlight Aviation Services, will be joined by New Jersey Assemblywoman Annette Quijano, community and faith leaders, family members and 32BJ representatives.
WHEN: Newark airport workers will hit the picket line at 9pm on November 18th
WHERE: Terminal C, Door 1 Arrivals, Newark Liberty International Airport
VISUALS: strike signs, banners, posters and purple t-shirts
Newark— Starting Wednesday night November 18th, contracted airport workers from major airports that serve 393 million passengers a year are striking for their families.
While airlines across the country have been making record profits, the airport workers who make these profits possible are struggling to survive in jobs that pay poverty wages, provide little to no affordable health care, and few paid days off. Various studies have shown that these working conditions can directly affect airport worker’s families and their communities. Like fast food workers, who they have supported during similar national strikes, airport workers have been organizing for the past three years and have committed to do whatever it takes to win $15 and union rights. As airport workers have been organizing for better lives, many of the subcontractors they work for have committed health and safety violations and many of their demands for better treatment have been met with illegal repression.
To expose the illegal treatment that they are forced to endure at our nation’s airports, thousands of airport workers across the country have decided to go on strike.
In Newark, airport workers are striking to protest against unfair labor practices by their employer PrimeFlight Aviation Services. At each airport, striking airport workers are taking action against individual yet similar illegal practices, the last straw after years of poverty wages, few benefits and subpar working conditions.
Ramp workers, baggage handlers, wheelchair attendants, cabin cleaners, terminal cleaners and passenger service workers are also striking tomorrow in Chicago, Boston, New York City, Newark, Philadelphia, and Fort Lauderdale.
*About 32BJ: With 145,000 members in 11 states–including more than 10,000 in New Jersey–32BJ SEIU is the largest property services union in the country.