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Southwest ground workers picket outside of Love Field

Star-Telegram

Southwest Airlines ground workers picketed outside of Dallas Love Field and 15 other airports on Tuesday, saying the company is not investing in its people or passengers.

The airline, which has struggled with on-time performance this year, has expanded its network and added flights, particularly out of Love Field. But the Transport Workers Union said the company has not added enough workers or increased its fleet which has caused delays.

“It’s not the hard-working ground crew causing delays - it’s caused by decisions at the top,” Local 555 of the Transportation Workers Union said in a newspaper ad appearing on Tuesday.

The TWU, which represents more than 10,000 ground workers at Southwest, has been in contract talks with Southwest since 2011 and there have been no pay raises for the ground workers in the past four years.

Workers are picketing at the corner of Mockingbird and Cedar Springs outside of Love Field and are passing out leaflets in the terminal. The local union held a similar picket on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.

In a statement, Southwest said it respects its workers’ rights to express their opinions regarding the ongoing contract talks.

“We've made multiple offers to TWU 555 that have gone unaccepted or ignored. Our proposals would put more money in Employees' pockets immediately, improving individual compensation by thousands of dollars per year. In exchange for increased compensation, the Company is seeking more operational flexibility in a manner that safeguards Employees from negative impacts in a competitive industry – helping preserve and add more jobs in the future,” Southwest said.

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