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Southwest Ground Workers Oppose Outsourcing Jobs

M E D I A  A D V I S O R Y
Originally Published 19 Jun, 2012 at www.twu.org

Informational Leafleting at Midway Airport
Has Southwest Lost that Luvin’ Feeling?

CHICAGO – Transport Workers Union Local 555, representing 8,400 ramp, operations, provisioning and freight agents nationwide at Southwest Airlines (LUV) distributed leaflets to passengers at Chicago’s Midway Airport on Tuesday, June 19th asking for support in opposing Southwest Airlines proposal to outsource jobs and use temporary contract workers. Some 700 members of TWU Local 555 work at Midway for Southwest.

Contract negotiations began with Southwest Airlines in July 2011; however, little progress has been made in reaching an agreement.

“Our members have a long history of providing outstanding service to Southwest Airlines passengers, and while job security is a priority for our members, we are very concerned about the long-range effect contract workers will have on our airline and our customers,” said TWU Local 555 President Charles Cerf.  “For over 40 years, our culture has focused on the highest quality customer service delivered by dedicated, career employees who have a vested interest in providing the best service possible to our customers,” said Cerf.

Randy Barnes, TWU Local 555 district representative representing Chicago explained, “Our members here in Chicago perform a variety of duties on the ground that directly impact our customers. Our work is crucial to on-time departures, flight safety, baggage and freight handling and providing our customers with the Southwest Airlines’ legendary service. Our members will thank customers for flying Southwest Airlines and to encourage customers to tell Southwest Airlines not to outsource our work.”

TWU Local 555 is an affiliate of the Transport Workers Union of America (TWU) and the AFL-CIO. Across the nation, TWU represents 200,000 workers and retirees primarily employed in public transportation, rail and aviation. A majority of TWU’s members work in commercial aviation. In addition to ground workers, TWU also represents flight attendants, flight dispatchers and flight instructors at Southwest Airlines.

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TWU Local 555 represents Ramp, Operations, Provisioning & Freight Agents of Southwest Airlines. For further information regarding their opposition to proposals that would outsource Union jobs at Southwest Airlines, visit their website at twu555.org.