Employees at New York’s LaGuardia airport went on strike earlier this week, saying they’re not being adequately protected against the Ebola Virus.
The 200 Air Serv employees who went on strike are contracted to clean Delta planes, and tell reporters they routinely come in direct contact with human waste while working.
As Ebola can only be caught through direct contact with the bodily fluids of a person with the illness, workers who routinely come in contact with human waste while working are at risk. Workers say they routinely come into contact with feces, vomit, and blood while on the job, and that that they want better working conditions. While 200 employees walked out on Wednesday, most returned to work the next day.
Air Serv spokesman Chas Strong counters that “Air Serv trains its cabin cleaners in its long-standing safety procedures and cleaning protocols including for blood borne pathogens,” and that the company issued “update on protocols for Ebola just last week.” While there’s little risk for an Ebola outbreak in the United States, the Department of Homeland Security and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention have announced new screening procedures for passengers traveling from Ebola-stricken countries in West Africa.