Workers stage first strike as National Labor Relations Board issues complaint alleging that officials of Alstate Maintenance engaged in unfair labor practices by spying on workers, threatening employees with reprisals if they took part in union activities, and barring workers from wearing union hats or buttons
WHO: Baggage handlers, skycaps, wheelchair attendants and passenger services employees of Alstate Maintenance, officials of 32BJ SEIU, City Council Member Julissa Ferreras and community supporters.
WHAT: A press conference outside Terminal One Arrivals as workers, launch the first strike of the airport campaign. Workers have filed several Unfair Labor Practices charges with the NLRB against Alstate in the past several years.
WHEN: Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2014. 1 p.m.
WHERE: Outside Terminal One Arrivals at JFK International Airport, near Air Train station.
WHY: For more than two years, contracted workers at JFK, La Guardia and Newark airports have fought for economic justice, benefits and the right to join a union of their choice. Last May, a majority of the workers voted to designate 32BJ SEIU as their union, but contractors have refused to negotiate. The NLRB has issued a complaint alleging Alstate officials spied on workers to see if they were engaging in union activities, questioned and threatened them. Workers also report that about two weeks ago, Alstate violated labor law by sending two workers home for wearing pro-union buttons that said “Contract Now.” Airport workers in Boston, Philadelphia and Florida also are staging actions this week.
VISUALS: Striking airport workers carrying signs and chanting.
With more than 145,000 members, 32BJ SEIU is the largest property service union in the country