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California Briefing / LOS ANGELES

Airport union to vote on strike

August 20, 2008|Joanna Lin

A union representing 2,500 service workers at Los Angeles International Airport will vote today on whether to authorize a strike, union representatives said.

Airport Workers United, part of SEIU Local 1877, has been negotiating since May with nine contractors that serve several major airlines, including American, Southwest and United.

Union leaders say the contractors are using unfair labor practices by failing to negotiate in good faith and by threatening workers who support the union -- a contention disputed by the contractors, who say they have been working hard to reach an agreement.

The union members include service workers employed at the airport terminals and on planes in jobs including security, wheelchair assistance and airplane cabin cleaning. The union is pushing for higher wages, improved medical coverage and more training, equipment and staff support, said Mike Chavez, a union spokesman.

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