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Chicago: O’Hare workers set to strike Nov 29

Chicago O’Hare Airport Workers Set Strike For Nov. 29

The support staff strike could extend to nearly 20 airports, says union

Support staff at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport said Monday they would strike on Nov. 29, with the action expected to spread to almost 20 other airports.


Workers including aircraft cabin cleaners and janitors at the nation’s second-busiest airport last week voted to take industrial action over wages and work conditions, but on Monday said they would delay the start of the strike to after the busy Thanksgiving travel period, which ends Sunday.


Hundreds are expected to walk off the job, said the Service Employees International Union Local 1 in a statement.


The union said the action would extend “to nearly 20 airports serving 2 million passengers a day,” but didn’t identify the facilities.


The workers aren’t members of the union, but the labor group is organizing their protest efforts. Most of the 2,000 support staff at O’Hare work for subcontractors rather than employees of the city or airlines.


O’Hare’s largest airlines have said they are making contingency plans. More than 27 million passengers are expected to fly within and from the U.S. during the Thanksgiving period, according to Airlines for America, a trade group.


United Continental Holdings Inc., the largest carrier by passengers at O’Hare, said Friday it was taking steps to ensure its vendors have plans in place to “to ensure a safe and on-time operation for our customers.”


American Airlines Group Inc., the second-largest carrier there, said it was also making efforts to avoid disruption.