SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – The union representing fast food workers at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) is warning weekend travelers to get to the airport a little earlier than they would have expected on Friday, as union members are planning a “protest including civil disobedience with the potential to block traffic.”
The protest, organized by Unite Here Local No. 2, will take place on the departures level of Terminal 3 from 2 p.m. Friday.
“Travelers should plan to arrive early,” a press release read. SFO food service workers say they are paid ‘poverty wages’ and have not had a raise for three years. The majority of workers earn just $17.05 an hour, the news release continues.
“Workers – including cashiers, baristas, cooks, dishwashers, bartenders, servers, etc. – say they want airport employers to take bargaining seriously, and they have voted 99.7% to authorize a strike,” the press release said, noting that their hourly wages are often less than the price of a single meal at the airport.
“I have to work two jobs to support my family, and I’m exhausted from living on four hours of sleep a day,” Lucinda To, United Club lounge attendant and waitress at Cat Cora’s Kitchen told SFO. “I make $16.99 an hour when a meal at the airport costs at least $20. I hope this protest will show people that SFO workers need a change and that we are ready to strike for it.
In a viral TikTok video, an employee claims that the burger she serves costs about $5 more than her hourly wage.
“I make $15.10 an hour and a burger costs $19.95,” she says. “Not fair. … Most of my co-workers work two jobs just to make ends meet.
Unite Here Local No. 2 represents more than 15,000 workers at SFO, Oakland International Airport and other Bay Area locations.
“Working at SFO used to mean having a good job, but most airport fast food workers haven’t seen a raise in three years,” local chairman Anand Singh said. “These days, a single meal at SFO often costs more than what an employee of an airport fast-food restaurant earns in an entire hour. After nine months of fruitless negotiations, we are ready to strike for decent jobs.