Redefining the Minimum Wage

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SeaTac’s Proposition 1 has passed! This proposition will bring living wages, paid sick leave and the right to organize to over 6000 airport workers at the Sea-Tac Airport.

It was a hard fought election that garnered National and International news attention.

Here is an article from the editorial board of the New York Times, putting the vote in SeaTac into perspective. (Just a snippet below, but read the full article here: Redefining the Minimum Wage.)

Redefining the Minimum Wage

Business has been brisk at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, with a record number of passengers spending record amounts of money eating and shopping. But for an estimated 6,500 workers at the airport and its nearby hotels, car rental agencies and parking lots, the activity has not translated into economic security, let alone prosperity. Wages for airport-related jobs average an estimated $11 an hour, ranging from less than $10 an hour for airline contractors, like baggage handlers and cabin cleaners, to about $13 an hour for car-rental employees. Continue reading

Twenty leading Democrats endorse SeaTac Proposition 1 SeaTac Good Jobs Initiative gaining momentum

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SeaTac, WA – Twenty leading Democrats including U.S. Representative Adam Smith, King County Executive Dow Constantine, King County Councilmember Julia Patterson, and State Senator Karen Keiser are announcing their strong support and endorsement of SeaTac Proposition 1, on this fall’s election ballot. The Speaker of the State House, Frank Chopp, and the State Democrats, King County Democrats and the 33rd District Democrats also endorsed SeaTac Proposition 1.

U.S. Representative Adam Smith (9th District) said: “I grew up in the SeaTac area, my father worked in the SeaTac area — he was a ramp serviceman for United Airlines, where he got decent wages and benefits at his blue collar job. That enabled me to pursue my hopes and dreams, and that’s what I want for everyone in society as well. Equality of opportunity — a chance at creating that middle class life and I’m very worried that we’re losing that. That’s why I’m supporting SeaTac Proposition 1 – to bring back decent paying jobs at the airport and give thousands of our region’s families a fair shot at success.” Continue reading

Alaska Airlines Loses Attempt to Block Vote on Good Jobs Initiative

Contact: Heather Weiner, heather (at) heatherweiner.com

Alaska Airlines, WA Restaurant Association sought to stop SeaTac vote on living wage, paid sick leave

SeaTac  – July 19, 2013: SeaTac voters and airport workers say they are not surprised Alaska Airlines and the Washington Restaurant Association failed their legal attempt to block the SeaTac City Council from sending the Good Jobs Initiative to voters later this fall. Voters and community leaders continue to question the corporations’ motivation in blocking a popular citizen initiative that will give workers in and around the airport the opportunity to make ends meet and get ahead.

Alaska Airlines and the Washington Restaurant Association tried to prevent SeaTac voters from voicing their opinions on a popular voter-backed initiative to bring good jobs to SeaTac Airport and related hospitality industries. Alaska Airlines and the Washington Restaurant Association, represented by corporate law firm Davis, Wright, Tremaine, filed their demands last week.

Alaska failed to convince the judge to order the SeaTac city clerk to not transmit the citizens’ initiative to the SeaTac City Council on July 23rd. Continue reading

SeaTac Voters Appalled By Alaska Airlines’ Attempt to Block Vote on Good Jobs Initiative

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Alaska Airlines, WA Restaurant Association seek to stop SeaTac vote on living wage, paid sick leave

SeaTac  – July 15, 2013: SeaTac voters and airport worker supporters reacted sharply to the news that Alaska Airlines and the Washington Restaurant Association have filed a lawsuit seeking to block the SeaTac City Council from sending the Good Jobs Initiative to voters later this fall. Voters and community leaders question the corporations’ motivation in blocking a popular citizen initiative that will give workers in and around the airport the opportunity to make ends meet and get ahead.

The lawsuit from Alaska Airlines and the Washington Restaurant Association asks the King County Superior Court to prohibit “the City of SeaTac and the City Clerk from taking any further steps to place the proposed Ordinance before the City Council for action or any other steps to forward the proposed Ordinance to King County for placement on a ballot for any election.”

“I’m appalled that Alaska Airlines is trying to stop SeaTac citizens from being able to vote on the good jobs initiative. What are they afraid of? Why don’t they want to share the success of the company with me and my community?” asked Chris Smith, a SeaTac resident and worker at Sea-Tac Airport. Continue reading

Huge support as workers, community allies launch “good jobs” initiative in SeaTac

SeaTac, May 14 – Airport workers and community allies are moving forward on a voter initiative to improve the jobs of thousands of low-wage workers in and around SeaTac Airport.

Last week, airport workers who are part of the SeaTac Committee for Good Jobs filed an initiative petition with the City of SeaTac and have begun to collect signatures to get the measure qualified for presentation to the City Council, and for inclusion on the November 2013 ballot

More than 90 volunteers came out last Saturday to gather signatures. The Committee expects to gather enough signatures to qualify to get the measure qualified for presentation to the City Council, and for inclusion on the November 2013 ballot in the coming weeks. A broad array of workers, faith and community supporters, union members and retirees are part of the SeaTac Committee for Good Jobs. Working Washington is also part of the Committee.

The measure would set basic employment standards for workers employed in the transportation, tourism and hospitality industries in SeaTac:

  •  Paid sick leave, to allow workers to care for themselves and immediate family members
  •  More full-time work opportunities for those who need it
  •  Companies that collect automatic service charges, or collect tips on customer bills, must give 100 percent of the service charges or tips to the workers who performed the service
  •  Living wages of at least $15/hour Continue reading