On the Picket Line

Miami airport workers rally, press for union contract

By Cindy Jaquith
September 24, 2018

MIAMI — Some 60 airport workers and supporters rallied at Miami International Airport Aug. 30 to back Envoy Air customer service agents fighting to win their first union contract. Envoy is a subsidiary of American Airlines.

Envoy workers do the same work as American Airlines service agents, but for less pay. In 2015 they voted to join the Communications Workers of America to press for better conditions. Since then, Envoy has stalled on negotiations over their first contract.

The CWA represents 14,000 passenger service agents at American Airlines and some 9,000 at its subsidiaries, Piedmont Airlines and Envoy, which are both in contract negotiations. These companies show the American Eagle logo.

Envoy gate agent Salma Kabbaj told the Militant  she has worked for the company for four years, but makes only $10.50 an hour. Starting pay at Envoy is $9.48 an hour, only 48 cents more than new agents got 11 years ago. At Piedmont, new employees get less, starting at $8.50.

Attending the rally were members of the CWA, Transport Workers Union, UNITE HERE and Service Employees International Union. A couple of Walmart workers also participated to show support.