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Members of the Transportation Workers Union Local 555 picket near Love Field Thursday, March 28, 2013 in Dallas. (Cooper Neill / Staff Photographer)

Ground workers at Southwest Airlines are picketing Thursday at Dallas Love Field and some other airports served by Southwest.

The demonstration comes as Transport Workers Union Local 555 and the carrier are in the midst of contract talks. The union is protesting Southwest proposals to outsource some jobs, among other complaints. The union says the changes “would negatively impact customer service and impose unnecessary concessions” on its members.

The union, which represents the airline’s ramp, operations, provisioning and freight agents,represents more than 9,400 employees (the TWU estimate) or 9,800 (the airline’s estimate).

The two sides began talks in 2011 for a new contract to replace its current agreement, which was approved on March 27, 2009, and became amendable on July 1, 2011. The National Mediation Board is now assisting in the negotiations.

The TWU members were also picketing at Southwest-served airports in Buffalo, N.Y., Baltimore, Chicago, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood and Tampa, Fla., Houston, Kansas City, Mo., Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Nashville, Oakland, Phoenix, Portland, Ore., and Seattle.

Keep reading for a statement from TWU Local 555 president Charles Cerf.

… [visit site to read more]

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