Solidarity with BWI Worker

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AFT-Maryland stood in solidarity with our brother from SEIU32BJ as he faces discipline for testifying in Annapolis for higher wages. Berhanu Yiferu testified in Annapolis for a bill that would raise the wages of transportation employees. The next day he found out his services were no longer needed at his job. His employer, airline subcontractor Prospect, claims he was let go because he missed assisting a passenger but Yiferu, colleagues, and his union maintain this was retribution for his testimony in Annapolis.

AFT-Maryland joined with other labor activists, religious leaders, and Baltimore City Council President Brandon Scott to address Southwest Airlines (an airline that subcontracts to Prospect) to deliver a letter in support of Mr. Yiferu and ask them (Southwest Airlines) to push Prospect to give Mr. Yiferu his job back.

Following the demonstration, leaders were told Mr. Yiferu would be given his job back. At publication, he has not received word of being rehired. SEIU32BJ has committed to continuing to agitating for Mr. Yiferu’s job. No worker should make $8.50 (plus unreliable tips) and be punished for testifying in support of a bill for greater wages.

2020-03-03