Austin airport's minimum wage reaches cruising altitude of $20 per hour
Always a trailblazer, the City of Austin recently set an example in raising its employees’ minimum wage to $20 per hour, with an upcoming boost to $22. Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, owned and operated by the city, is following suit. It has officially committed to a $20 minimum wage, going into effect the week of December 19.
This wage goes to “[f]ood service workers and members of UNITE HERE Local 23,” the latter being a multi-city hospitality workers’ union. A member of the union, Cinthya San Miguel, commented on the citywide raise when it was first announced, saying this move was part of “standing up for Austin workers.”
Delaware North Company (DNC) is the first of those contracted with the City of Austin to set the new wage. All companies have until January 1 to make the change. In October, the city calculated the local “living wage” (i.e. the wage necessary to comfortably support basic needs) at $20 per hour.
“We are thankful the Austin City Council increased the minimum wage for city employees and thank Council Member Fuentes for spearheading this effort in City Hall,” said San Miguel in a new press release. “Workers are getting priced out of living in Austin, but this wage increase is a step in the right direction – allowing us more room to breathe and provide for our families. This is an example of what we can do when elected leaders, companies, and the workers come together.”
Council Member Vanessa Fuentes connected the wage increase to a matter of “basic dignity” and keeping up with Austin’s rising prices. “Our food service workers keep this city vibrant and thriving. They deserve the opportunity to call this place home,” she said.
In 2019, the airport announced a 20-year master growth plan detailing more than 60 projects that will continue to change the landscape of the growing public service, in concert with less-predictable changes from the city.