AUSTIN (KXAN) — Sodexo employees from two Austin airline lounges plan to unionize, according to an announcement Monday.
The workers in the United Airlines and Delta Air Lines lounges are demanding “a fair and neutral process for workers to decide on unionization,” according to a release from UNITE HERE, a hospitality workers union.
“We’re excited to see Sodexo workers at the Austin airport stand up for themselves and we support their call for a fair process to decide on a union,” UNITE HERE Local 23 organizer Aileen Bazan said in the release. “Hospitality workers in Texas know there’s no better time than now to demand respect for the work we do.”
UNITE HERE said it represents other food service workers at AUS from HMS Host, Delaware North and LSG Sky Chefs. The group’s union workers receive regular wage increases, affordable healthcare and other benefits with their union contract, the group said.
In recent months, several employee groups in Austin have voted to unionize or announced union plans. They include Via 313, Alamo Drafthouse’s South Lamar location, Starbucks’ West 24th and Nueces Streets location and Starbucks’ 45th Street and North Lamar location.
Because Texas is a right-to-work state, a person cannot be denied employment because of membership or non-membership in a union or labor group, according to the attorney general’s website.
“I am so proud to be able to support the Sodexo workers at our airport,” District 2 Austin City Council member Vanessa Fuentes said in the release. “Workers are the backbone of our airport – without them, we wouldn’t be able to share the beauty of our city with the world. I stand with them and encourage Sodexo to allow them a fair process to decide on unionization.”
KXAN has reached out to the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport and Sodexo for comment. This article will be updated with their response.