Flight attendants at one of American Airlines’ largest regional carriers vote for strike
Piedmont Airlines flight attendants voted 100% for the strike in response to a new contract proposal.
The carrier said the high health premiums exceed the minimum wage increases offered by Piedmont.
Union leaders say Piedmont flight attendants earn 45% less than mainline flight attendants providing the same service.
Piedmont Airlines flight attendants got a 100% strike vote Thursday after management offered a contract that the union says does not provide a living wage for members.
In a vote by the Piedmont flight attendants’ union, the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, members voted unanimously to authorize a strike, AFA said, with 75.4% of the membership. participant. The vote comes after years of stalled talks and negotiations over flight attendant compensation and benefits.
Under the contract offered by Piedmont, flight attendants would get minimum increases that would not keep up with the increase in health premiums, meaning they would earn less income under the new contract than they do today. ‘hui, said the AFA. According to AFA Piedmont President Ketura Johnson the offer is less than a living wage and flight attendants “cannot afford to work in Piedmont”.
After the vote, team members made a picket line outside Philadelphia International Airport, making the matter public, according to the union.
According to AFA International President Sara Nelson, Piedmont flight attendants earn up to 45% less than their mainline counterparts at American to do the same job. According to Glassdoor, the average hourly wage for flight attendants in Piedmont is $ 20 per hour, while the hourly wage for flight attendants on major U.S. lines is $ 31 per hour.
“Workers across the country are on strike right now to end two-tier employment systems where workers earn less for the same jobs,” Nelson said. “The Piedmont flight attendants want a fair deal, but if a strike is needed, we will support the whole industry. “
Piedmont management said in a statement that it is committed to entering into a contractual agreement.
“We are committed to securing a negotiated competitive contract for our more than 350 Piedmont flight attendants,” a Piedmont spokesperson told Insider. “We have the most professional flight service professionals in the industry, and Piedmont is a leader in safety and performance because of their efforts. We agree that our team members deserve the best contract and we are committed to providing it to them. We look forward to resuming negotiations in November. “
AFA says union could ask National Mediation Council to declare negotiations deadlocked and send both parties to a 30-day “cooling off” period, meaning the company could go on strike 30 days after making the request. If the union went on strike, it would do so as part of its Create Havoc around Our System, or CHAOS, strategy. The AFA explained that the strike could impact a single flight or the entire system, and that it does not have to give notice to management or passengers before going on strike.
Nelson warned of the impact the union strike would have on American’s network, citing the fragile functioning of the airline industry and the consequences of staff shortages.
“We have seen over the past few months how delicate the aviation system is and how much it depends on each worker. Piedmont flight attendants are sending a message to management and to our industry as a whole,” he said. Nelson said.
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