Advocates: SEIU's Logan Airport Drive Shows Safety Still Relevant In Organizing
Ed Foulke was featured in the Bloomberg BNA article "SEIU's Logan Airport Drive Shows Safety Still Relevant in Organizing, Advocates Say."
In recent complaints filed with the Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration, several of the roughly 1,500 airplane cleaners who work at Logan have said they are exposed to: toxic cleaning chemicals; human waste; and sharp needles, scissors, toothpicks and razors that lay hidden in the recesses of the planes' seats and seatback pockets.
The Service Employees International Union has begun using worker safety as a rallying point in an unfolding organizing drive at Logan Airport in Boston.
According the the article, many unions have downplayed safety and health in their pitch to new members, largely because the passage of the Occupational Safety and Health Act in 1970 has enshrined into law many of the protections for which workers used to bargain.
Ed said he doesn't see any advantage for unionized workers in terms of improving safety and health, largely because public pressures are already forcing employers to better their safety records.
“Companies now realize that they can't afford to have a poor safety record or they're not going to be able to bid on jobs,” said Ed.
Nonunion workers still have whistle-blower protections under the OSH Act, he explained.