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Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan joined in a protest at a Detroit airport, but her solidarity with the workers ended when they were arrested while she was not.
Tlaib took part in a Friday protest at Detroit Metro Airport in which catering service workers protested outside the Delta airlines terminal in a demand for higher wages, according to WXYZ.
— Diana Hussein (@heyadiana) February 14, 2020
Workers blocked an access road. Tlaib, who has a history of controversial public statements, joined the workers who were later arrested in blocking the road, and rode with them to the police station after their arrest, but she was not charged, according to the Detroit News
The protests were not confined to Detroit. Members of Unite Here, which represents airline industry employees across the U.S., demonstrated at Delta hubs in Minneapolis and Seattle as well as United and American hubs in Boston, Charlotte, Dallas, Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia and San Francisco, the Detroit News reported.
“Until airlines like Delta recognize all the workers whose labor contribute to its record-profits, until airline catering workers get what they deserve in a fair contract, we will keep coming out at the airport and anywhere else Delta will hear us,” Unite Here Local 24 President Nia Winston said.
Tlaib issued a series of tweets in which she said she was proud to stand with the workers “who are willing to put their bodies on the line.”
“The airline catering workers are desperate for a better quality of life and put their bodies on the line in their fight against the exorbitant corporate greed by the airlines denying them of their right to a living wage and good healthcare,” she wrote in one post.
“Working people in the kitchens at DTW and airports across the U.S. have been hurting for too long, but today we are saying no more. Today, we are calling on Delta Air Lines to say that if it wants to really prove that it cares about the working families more than it does its bottom line, than it will commit to ending poverty in the airline catering industry so one job is enough for all airline workers,” she wrote in another.
Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota tweeted her support of Tlaib.
Tlaib’s protest in Detroit comes days after she was the target of one at Rutgers University as students objected to her presence, according to MyCentralJersey.
“Jewish students are under attack in universities across the United States. This will not only increase the hostility to all students, but the people who feel it the most are Jewish students,” said Karen Lichtbraun, a Manhattan resident who described herself as a “Zionist protester,” according to MyCentralJersey.
During Tlaib’s appearance former New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind rebuked Tlaib for her “blood libel” against Jews, and was removed from her presentation.