Travellers flying in and out of New York over the next couple of days could face disruption after more than 1,000 airport workers voted to strike.
Security officers, baggage handlers and wheelchair attendants at New York JFK and LaGuardia airports are starting industrial action at 2200 local time tonight, with no confirmed end date, in protest at being paid below the $15 living wage.
Union officials claim that airline subcontractor Aviation Safeguard has also threatened to fire workers who have long pushed for higher wages and and increased benefits such as affordable healthcare.
The union said in a statement: “While the airlines have been making record profits and the Port Authority has approved billions of dollars to modernise LaGuardia airport, the airport workers who make these profits possible are struggling to survive. Their demands for better treatment are met with illegal repression.”
Delta has said it “will be taking measures to ensure that our more than 35,000 customers booked through LaGuardia on Thursday are not affected”.
United said it has contingency plans in place.