TSA screeners keep right to collective bargaining

WASHINGTON – An amendment to the Federal Aviation Administration bill that would have prohibited Transportation Security Administration screeners from engaging in collective bargaining, offered by Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., was defeated Tuesday on a 47-51 vote.

The measure required 60 votes to become a part of the larger bill, and has been withdrawn.

The Obama administration’s TSA director John Pistole agreed earlier this month to permit limited collective bargaining rights to TSA workers, reversing the position of the Bush administration taken when the agency was created in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Two unions — the National Treasury Employees Union and the American Federation of Government Employees — are seeking to represent them. The Federal Labor Relations Authority has scheduled a vote beginning March 9.

Commercial Appeal