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New YORK city airport workers earning nation’s highest minimum wage

LaGuardia Airport is one of the air hubs to increase the wages for the staff.

(Getty)

The airport workers around New York City have the highest minimum wage of a public body within the next five years.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey’s Board of Commissioners approved a proposal on Thursday that would increase airport workers minimum wage of $19 per hour by 2023.

The increase will affect 40,000 airport workers at JFK, LaGuardia and Newark airport.

(iStock)

The increase will affect 40,000 airport workers, including baggage handlers, security officers, chair, agents and the terminal and the aircraft cleaners at New York’s John F. Kennedy, LaGuardia and Newark airport.

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The three airports are among the busiest in the country, where approximately 65 million passengers combined in 2017.

The increase is particularly strong for workers in New Jersey, which will start making $8.45 more per hour. New York employees will see increases from their current minimum wage of $13 per hour. The port authority has said that the increases are an attempt to retain employees. New York City airports see a turnover of 30 percent per year. In other similar airports in the country, that number could be as low as 6 percent.

“There is no doubt that this new policy will greatly benefit the traveling public,” Port Authority Vice Chairman Jeffrey Lynford said in a statement. “Better wages and benefits will lead to significantly reduced turnover of personnel, allowing the better-trained and attentive staff who can help in our overall security efforts, as in the case of emergency. It will also improve workplace morale and productivity.”

The wage increases will happen in steps, starting with the first emergence on 1 November.

Earlier this year, Los Angeles airports increased to the minimum wage for airport employees to $18.99 per hour, excluding benefits.

This story was originally published by Travel + Leisure.

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