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Flight Attendants Fight for Financial Relief

by Megan Hill

May 7, 2020

Flight Attendants. Photo: Potatushkina | Dreamstime.com

Daily

Flight attendant organizations are fighting for their rights as airlines cut capacity and lay off workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Association of Professional Flight Attendants, which represents American Airlines’ more than 26,000 flight attendants, wrote it is “highly offended” American is giving pilots financial benefits, but not offering the same for flight attendants.

“Our members who have proven their loyalty and professionalism time and again — during this and past crisis events — by sacrificing pay, work rules, pensions, and now their health, keep their airline flying,” said Lori Bassani, president, APFA National, wrote in a message to members.

“We are highly offended that the company offered the pilot group financial benefits for two of the pilot options and would not consider the same for our group,” she added. “This is a slap in the face for our members who are keeping this airline in the air — and it severely underestimates our relevance during this or any crisis.”

The group is pushing American to take on additional measures, such as reducing in-flight services to limit interaction with passengers; offering hazard pay for flight attendants who can’t take leave; and giving sufficient protection to members who test positive for COVID-19.

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