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O'Hare Airport Strike Could Snag Thanksgiving Travelers

Image: O'Hare Airport Strike Could Snag Thanksgiving Travelers

Employees at Chicago's O'Hare Airport plan to go on strike Nov. 29. (Tupungato/Dreamstime.com)

By    |   Monday, 21 Nov 2016 01:31 PM

An O’Hare airport strike could snag Thanksgiving travelers after nearly 2,000 airport workers voted in favor of a strike last week, demanding union rights and a $15-per-hour wage.

Service Employees International Union Local 1 officials said Monday that they will go on strike Tuesday, Nov. 29, at Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Fox News reported.

The workers that voted for the strike include “baggage handlers, cabin cleaners, janitors and wheelchair attendants,” Fox News noted.

An O’Hare employee, who gets $11.50 an hour for a position that used to pay $22.50 an hour, spoke on behalf of the workers during a press conference Monday morning.

“We should not have to live paycheck to paycheck,” the woman said, according to Fox News.

Some 22 million Americans are expected to fly between Friday and Thanksgiving, which means a strike could be a rude awakening for travelers returning home after the holiday, ABC 7 Chicago noted.

“They need to have the right to demand and receive living wages, safe working conditions and respect and dignity on the job, like all working people deserve,” said Tom Balanoff, president of SEIU Local 1.

According to SEIU union leaders, workers plan to protest outside the airport and even walk through the terminals.

Despite this, the Chicago Department of Aviation said it doesn’t anticipate that the strike will cause any disruption in service during the holiday.

However, travel site Orbitz.com said O’Hare International Airport could be the busiest airport this Thanksgiving, CBS News noted.

“You know, today, is easy. A lot lighter than I expected. But come Tuesday and Wednesday it’s gonna be massive,” said one father, who decided to travel before the holiday rush, according to CBS News.

Despite the millions of Americans who will be traveling by plane this Thanksgiving, there will also be millions of people traveling by car and train this year.

There’s good news for those who will be driving, considering gas prices are expected to be the second-cheapest they’ve been since 2008, CBS News noted. In 2008, gas prices were $1.85 on average and they’re now $2.14 per gallon.

As for those traveling by train, Tuesday and Wednesday are expected to be the busiest days to travel. Nearly 750,000 people will be taking Amtrak for the holiday.

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An O'Hare airport strike could snag Thanksgiving travelers after nearly 2,000 airport workers voted in favor of a strike last week, demanding union rights and a $15-per-hour wage.
ohare, airport, strike, thanksgiving, travelers
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2016-31-21
Monday, 21 Nov 2016 01:31 PM
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