NYC Airport Strike Averted at JFK, LaGuardia on Labor Truce

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More than 1,200 workers at New York’s Kennedy and LaGuardia airports will stay on the job after scrapping a strike hours before it was supposed to begin.

An airline contractor, Command Security Corp.’s Aviation Safeguards unit, agreed to stay neutral in an organizing effort among its workers, the Service Employees International Union’s Local 32BJ said in an e-mailed statement Wednesday. Security officers, baggage handlers and wheelchair attendants had planned to walk off the job starting later in the day.

“We believe that this effort is in the best interest of our employees, customers and the passengers of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey,” Aviation Safeguards said in a statement. Employees will be free to choose or decline union representation, the company said.

Delta Air Lines Inc. and United Airlines are among companies that use Aviation Safeguards. Both airlines had plans in place to avoid any delays or travel interruptions beginning Wednesday evening. Kennedy was set to be the first target, after 10 p.m., followed by LaGuardia on Thursday.

Airport workers will continue to urge the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, the airports’ operator, to require wages of “at least $15 an hour and affordable health care for all subcontracted airport workers,” the union local said.

The Port Authority referred calls about the labor situation to the union.

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