The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has voted to raise wages to USD 19 by 2023 for the 40,000 airport New York and New Jersey baggage handlers, security officers, wheelchair agents, terminal and airplane cleaners and other airport workers at JFK, LaGuardia and Newark airports, the company said.
For New Jersey airport workers the new wage policy will give them an unprecedented USD 8.45 raise and parity pay with New York airport workers. It will also result in real gains for the New York airport workers themselves, who have been making USD 13.00 an hour.
This is a historic victory for the thousands of airport workers who in 2012, tired of working for poverty wages, spearheaded one of the most successful union organizing campaigns for respect, fair wages and union rights since the creation of the Fight for USD 15.
The 14,000 baggage handlers, skycaps, cleaners, security, wheelchair and passenger service workers at JFK, LaGuardia and Newark and members of 32BJ SEIU have been at the forefront in the fight for dignity and respect on the job and the professionalization of vital services at the region´s airports. Airport service workers´ ubiquity and constant contact with passengers and other workers make them an integral part of the security and business and continuity apparatus.
With all airport workers benefiting from the Port Authority´s new wage and benefits plan, airport workers will now set their sights on organizing the remaining minority of 14,000 airport subcontracted workers into their union 32BJ.