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Aldermen Push For Living Wage For Airport Concession Employees

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(Photo: O'Hare Airport Guide) credit: Pilar Clark

(Photo: O’Hare Airport Guide) credit: Pilar Clark

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CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago aldermen are pushing for a measure that would require a so-called living wage to be paid to all the workers at O’Hare and Midway international airport concessions.

But as WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports, a top City official suggests it may not be necessary.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports

With multinational companies now in a position to take over some of the food and other concessions at the airports, several aldermen want to require a living wage for the workers. The aldermen also want to minimize the number of workers who would lose their jobs in the takeover.

But Chicago Department of Aviation Commissioner Rosemarie Andolino told a budget hearing that market forces are already working to boost wages at O’Hare.

“You know, there are many providers today that hold concessions contracts with us at the airport that actually have a collective bargaining agreement; a contract with the union; with UNITE HERE.”

But Ald. John Arena (45th) is among those who says not all the concessionaires have such protections for their workers, and aldermen want to cover all employees as other cities have.

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