February 26, 2003
Diane S. Witiak
(202) 639-6419 (office)
(703-922-7825 (home)

AFGE To Charter New Local Representing Airport Screeners & Baggage Handlers

(Washington, D.C.)—“All Americans have the right to belong to a labor organization under the Constitution, even federal employees working for the Transportation Security Administration,” says Bobby L. Harnage, Sr., National President of the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE). The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will officially be folded into the Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.

Harnage will introduce the charter members of its newest nationwide Local—just for TSA employees—at a news conference on:

Monday, March 3, 2003
80 F Street, NW
10:30 a.m., 11th Floor Boardroom

Harnage, himself, will serve as interim president of the new Local. Charter members include screeners working at airports in the following cities: Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and St. Louis.

AFGE has filed a lawsuit challenging TSA chief J. M. Loy’s order denying collective bargaining rights to airport screeners and baggage handlers.

The union has filed seven petitions with the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) to represent TSA employees at Baltimore-Washington International, LaGuardia International, Pittsburgh International, Chicago Midway, Greensboro (N.C.), Port Columbus (Ohio), and three smaller airports in southern Texas—Brownsville, McAllen and Harlingen.

AFGE is the largest federal employees union, representing some 600,000 federal and D.C. government workers. To learn more about AFGE’s ongoing TSA organizing campaign, visit

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