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Airport workers in Rio de Janeiro go on strike as World Cup kicks off

Many Brazilians are angry about the amount of money spent on hosting the World Cup instead of funding education, healthcare and welfare programs.
By Aileen Graef Follow @AileenGraef Contact the Author   |   June 12, 2014 at 3:35 PM

RIO DE JANEIRO, June 12 (UPI) -- Workers at the three airports in Rio de Janeiro went on a 24-hour strike Wednesday night in an effort to receive a pay raise ahead of the 2014 World Cup.

It will not be a full strike as a labor court threatened the unions with a $22,400 fine if they did not maintain 80 percent service. Even with the mandate, there will be increased pressure on the airports as thousands of World Cup fans are set to arrive in the city. One of the routes affected flies to Sao Paulo, where the World Cup is being held.

The workers are trying to negotiate a 5.6 percent raise in wages and World Cup bonuses. Subway workers also recently went on strike, demanding a 12.2 percent salary increase. The subway network is only offering an 8.8 percent raise.

The subway workers said they will not strike on opening day.

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