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Airport Screeners Choose AFGE, AFL-CIO as their Union

Jeremy Sprinkle
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About 44,000 T.S.A. employees gain a voice at work

Following an election in April in which nearly 85-percent of Transportation Security Officers voted to form a union, T.S.O.s have chosen the AFL-CIO affiliate American Federation of Government Employees in a runoff election with the National Treasury Employees union to be their exclusive bargaining representative.

“We are obviously thrilled with the election results, but more importantly are delighted that the transportation security officers now will have the full union representation they rightly deserve,” said John Gage, the president of A.F.G.E.

T.S.O.s now have "the ability to improve their own lives, as well as the services they provide to others, by voting for workplace representation by the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO," said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. Their victory, he added, "affirms the deep-seated desire of working people across the country for a voice on the job and a seat at the table in solving workplace problems when given a free choice."

The votes followed a decision earlier this year by Transportation and Security Administration chief John S. Pistole to allow limited collective bargaining rights for the first time since the agency was created a decade ago. Airport screeners - unlike border patrol agents, customs officers, and other government security workers - were among the few federal employees without a union.