American Airlines

This company plans to lay off 600 employees at DFW Airport

A company that provides wheelchair escorts and other services for passengers at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport has given notice that it plans to lay off about 600 employees by mid-October.

ABM Aviation lost the vending contract for the services, which also includes giving minor travelers an escort through the airport, to competitor Prospect Airport Services Inc. Prospect will take over those responsibilities Oct. 18.

However, many of the laid off workers likely will be hired by Prospect, and will not be unemployed for any measurable period of time, said Emelia Doku, ABM senior manager of human resources.

Doku was listed as the company contact for a so-called “WARN letter” sent earlier this month to Irving city offices, to notify that city’s officials of the layoffs. Under federal labor law, businesses with more than 100 employees can be required to give 60 days notice of intent to reduce its work force.

Doku said in a phone interview that her company provided wheelchair escorts, minor traveler escorts and other passenger services for American Airlines.

ABM’s contract was with American Airlines, not DFW Airport itself, DFW spokesman David Magana said late Monday. DFW will continue to use ABM for custodial services on airport grounds under a separate contract, he said.

The employees affected by the layoffs have been notified, and none is represented by a labor union, Doku explained in her letter.

Gordon Dickson: 817-390-7796; @gdickson