SAN DIEGO — Banging drums, chanting slogans and holding signs, dozens of janitors who work at San Diego International held a protest outside Terminal 2 Thursday morning, demanding better pay and working conditions.
“What we understand is that many workers across California are fighting for $20 an hour, $25 an hour. Janitors at San Diego International Airport are making less than $20 an hour and some of these folks have been working here for 10-15 years,” said Christian Ramirez, political director with SEIU.
Around 200 janitors at the airport work for contractor Flagship. But they’ve worked without a contract since August.
“We want wages, we want to be respected and give us dignity. We want a good working environment,” said Ernesto Salazar, a janitor who has worked at the airport for about 10 years and is making around $18 an hour.
Ramirez says Flagship has been slow coming to the negotiating table, adding that needs to change in order to solve the labor dispute.
“We are hopeful that Flagship is listening to our demand to sit down and we remain hopeful that we’ll be able to reach an agreement before the end of the year,” said Ramirez. “If not, then we will do what other unions have done which is have to take the streets and to stop work until they listen.”
FOX 5 reached out to Flagship for comment, but did not hear back before this story was published.