On Dec 8th, airport service workers at SeaTac joined workers across 15 cities to demand nationwide wage and benefit standards for all airport workers. This was in solidarity with airport workers in cities like Boston, Chicago and Newark who went on strike to protest unfair labor practices, wage theft, and unsafe working conditions. Airport workers across the country are calling on Congress to stand with this largely Black, brown, and immigrant workforce, and pass the Good Jobs for Good Airports Act. Regardless of where we live or work, airport workers deserve to be respected, protected, and paid living wages with healthcare and paid time off.
Locally, SeaTac passenger service workers are fighting for affordable healthcare. On December 8, union siblings from SEIU 775, SEIU 1199NW, SEIU 925, Teamsters 117, Machinists 751, MLK Labor, AFSCME 28, Starbucks Workers United, and the SEIU6 janitorial and security sectors stood with airport workers in demanding affordable healthcare now.
When we fight, we win!
“As an immigrant and a mother by herself in America without a lot of support, every cent I make is needed for my family. I should not have to choose between my health and covering my rent or food. If I had employer paid health insurance, my life would change because I could focus that money elsewhere and provide more for my kids.”
—Jama Fosiya, Wheelchair Dispatcher at SeaTac Airport
“We need better pay because corporations are making a lot of money, but it is not going to the workers. Yet we are the ones who are working on holidays, and we miss spending time with our families as bosses remain at home and make profits. We are calling on this corporate greed to stop.”
—Askale Borena, Janitor at SeaTac Airport
“As an immigrant from Ethiopia, getting high medical bills could destabilize my family’s finances, which I’ve worked so hard to establish. The truth is this has not just happened to me. It is happening to my co-workers here in SeaTac Airport and across the nation. Health insurance is a basic need. Our salaries are too small, and the hospital bills are so expensive. There is simply no balance. The paychecks we receive, we use them to pay our bills and we barely have anything left afterwards.”
—Eshet Taye, Wheelchair Agent at SeaTac Airport
“Since the company does not offer health insurance, my pregnant coworker had to reduce her work hours to qualify for state insurance. It’s unfortunate that she had to choose between income to provide for her family and health insurance for her unborn child. It’s a shame that we have let corporate greed become more important than being human. We won’t take it any longer. We demand nationwide standards.”
—Saba Belachew, Wheelchair Agent at SeaTac Airport