Senator Reverend Warnock Cosponsors Legislation to Ensure Airport Service Workers Earn Living Wage, Benefits

Good Jobs for Good Airports Act would help provide prevailing wage and benefits to nation’s airport service workers

report shows airport service workers are typically paid substandard wages and receive few benefits

Senator Reverend Warnock: “I am proud to support this critical legislation that recognizes the hard work our nation’s airport service workers and invests in their professional and personal well-being” 

Washington D.C. — This week, U.S. Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA) cosponsored the newly-reintroduced Good Jobs for Good Airports Act. This legislation would provide airport service workers across the country — a predominantly Black, Brown, and immigrant workforce — with the wage and benefits they deserve after serving on the frontlines of the nation’s aviation system during the COVID-19 pandemic, climate disasters, and busy travel seasons. By increasing the pay of airport service workers, this legislation would also improve airports services and security–a victory for workers and passengers. 

“My parents taught me the value of hard work and the dignity that comes with a good paying job, which is why I am proud to support this critical legislation that recognizes the hard work of our nation’s airport service workers and invests in their professional and personal well-being” said Senator Reverend Warnock. “Our essential workers deserve the essential care afforded by a living wage and quality benefits.”

On Tuesday, the Center for American Progress published a report on the low wages paid to airport service workers and urged Congress to take action to improve the labor standards for this workforce. Provisions of the Good Jobs for Good Airports Act would do just that. Specifically, the legislation would prevent airports from accessing federal funds, unless airport service workers are paid the prevailing wage and benefits as established by the Department of Labor, as well as require airports ensure service workers employed by vendors (such as restaurants and retail stores) are paid the prevailing wage and benefits. Additionally, the bill includes a good-faith provision so airports are not penalized if the Department of Transportation (DOT) determines the airport made a good-faith effort to comply with the prevailing wage and benefit standards.

The Good Jobs for Good Airports Act was first introduced by Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) last year to repay the sacrifices that airport service workers made during the darkest days of the COVID-19 pandemic — and continue to make, each and every day — to keep our aviation system functioning. It is endorsed by SEIU, CWA, UNITE HERE, the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, the National Conference of Firemen & Oilers, and the Transportation Trades Department.   

A vocal champion for creating good-paying jobs across Georgia and policies that keep Georgia’s businesses and economy competitive, Senator Warnock has long supported efforts to pass the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, beginning with his work in the U.S. Senate Commerce, Transportation and Science Committee to secure infrastructure investments that will support Georgia jobs and help modernize the state’s infrastructure. The law includes several provisions led and supported by Senator Warnock, including policies and billions of dollars in investments to revitalize Georgia’s infrastructure—covering everything from roads and bridges, to ports and airports, to broadband and water and sewer infrastructure, electric vehicle charging infrastructure to electric school buses, and more.