Logan Airport Workers Prepare for Strike

Five hundred bag handlers, cabin cleaners, and other employees are protesting low wages and intimidation at the Boston airport.

A JetBlue plane takes off

Photo via iStock/rypson

Hundreds of employees at Logan Airport plan to strike starting at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday and have no plans to stop.

Cabin cleaners, baggage handlers, skycaps, and wheelchair attendants who say they have been threatened for union organizing are protesting low pay and intimidating behavior, according to MassLive. The strike will likely be one of the largest labor demonstrations at Logan in recent years, and workers told the Boston Globe that anti-union aggression increased over the weekend after they voted to authorize a protest.

The strikers are employed by the JetBlue subcontractors FSS and ReadyJet, but the airline, which runs the largest operation at Logan, told the Globe that flight service will remain normal. Pilots, gate agents, and other JetBlue employees are not striking, and the airline told the Globe that FSS and ReadyJet are gearing up with extra staff to minimize disruption.

Last week, Mayor Marty Walsh affirmed his support for the employees, who want to be represented by the Service Employees International Union. At a rally, Walsh told the strikers that protesting is “your right as American workers,” according to the Globe. The Boston Teachers Union also affirmed its support for the airport employees on Wednesday morning.

In December, the workers wrote a letter to JetBlue expressing their disappointment in an airline that has such a large footprint in Boston.

“We have been forced to file multiple complaints against JetBlue’s contractors ReadyJet and FSS for wage theft, little to no training, occupational health and safety violations, and harassment,” the Airport Workers’ Organizing Committee said in a statement. “We need an airline that will hire responsible contractors that respect people in your travel hubs.”