Who is Being Hired at SeaTac International Airport?

By Julio Sanchez Man giving a thumbs up in a suit

Mohamed Hassan has sent at least 15 qualified applications for a number of open positions at the airport. Who is being hired for these jobs?

Ayak Mithyang has experienced the same thing as Hassan, an Employment Case Worker at the Somali Community Services in SeaTac.

“They say they are hiring but I’ve put in 10 applications for jobs I am qualified for, and I have not received even one phone call,” said Mithyang, one of Mohamed’s clients.

Puget Sound Sage, Working Washington, Unite Here and other community organizations approached SeaTac on Thursday to demand good paying jobs for these workers.

The Seatac Airport is run like many other businesses. Instead of directly hiring employees, the Port of Seattle prefers to subcontract many of their services to other companies, which in turn hire workers for low wage jobs without benefits.

Our goal was to put the Airport Management and their subcontractors on notice that the workers and community are watching what’s going on. We are taking meaningful action to create fair wage jobs with benefits for local families and individuals.

First, our group of about 25 to 30 people went to two of the subcontractors in the airport--Prime Flights and Flight Service Systems--to ask this question.

The workers demanded to see the managers.  “We are here to demand fair treatment,” they said. Suddenly no one was available to talk to us.

Next we visited the ironically named Airport Jobs office, where the applications are received and evaluated.

Here, the manager was also suddenly engaged and unavailable. But we were asked to make an appointment in the future, though that doesn’t help us with good jobs now.

Moments after our questions, they sent a police officer to tell us to get out of there. We left promptly.   But that’s OK, because we will be back and we will continue coming back until we have jobs that allow us all to live with dignity and fair treatment.

For more information: A little history