By Bill Parry
A scathing new report finds that airport workers are the victims of rampant wage theft at JFK and LaGuardia Airports. The survey, conducted by Anzalone Liszt Grove Research, reports nine out of 10 subcontracted workers report at least one violation of wage and hour laws by their employer while 69 percent reported multiple violations last year.
The report was commissioned by 32BJ/SEIU.
“For low-wage workers already struggling to make ends meet, the rampant wage and hour violations at the airports are a second blow to the hardworking Skycaps, wheelchair attendants, baggage handlers, and other workers who keep our airports running every day,” the union’s president, Hector Figueroa, said. “These violations are not only illegal, but they expose the broader malfunction of the subcontracting system at the airports.”
While airlines are producing record profits, the union claims they created a “low-wage, high-turnover workforce which receives little or no training and inadequate equipment.”
In announcing a $1 million wage theft settlement in late September, state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said, “Airlines and the companies that operate our airports should make certain that the contractors they hire act responsibly. Together, we can send a strong message to anyone that would take advantage of low-wage workers: We won’t stand for it.”
Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (718) 260–4538.