Take a look at this important message from Demetrius DeBaise, an airport worker at Newark International and member of Working Families affiliate SEIU Local 32BJ:
My name is Demetrius DeBaise, and for the last five years I’ve worked as a baggage handler at Newark International. Every day I lift overweight bags for hours on end and help panicked passengers make their flights, all for just $8.25 an hour. The stress of trying to provide for my family on so little income has nearly broken me.
And now, Governor Chris Christie and his cronies in the Port Authority just blocked my raise.
This week the director of the NY/NJ Port Authority ordered raises for low-wage workers like me at JFK and LaGuardia airports. But Newark workers were left out. The reason? Chris Christie and his top person at the Port Authority refused to go along.
Chris Christie’s cronies at the Port Authority punished an entire town by closing down bridge lanes. Now they want to bully me and my co-workers to protect the profits of major airlines.
Punishing working people while protecting the powerful – it’s right out of the Christie playbook. And this isn’t even the first time Governor Christie has tried to stop me from getting a raise. Last year he actually vetoed a minimum wage increase for New Jersey workers.
We’re not asking for much. We just want a wage that lets us pay the bills and support our families, and it’s not fair that we may be denied the raise other workers across the Hudson will get just because we’re unlucky enough to have Chris Christie as our Governor.