For Immediate Release: December 9, 2008
Contact: Corey Caldwell 202-434-0586
Delta Pilots Seniority Arbitration Shows Importance Of 'Date Of Hire' To Flight Attendants
Washington, DC - Patricia Friend, AFA-CWA International President, issued the following statement today after an arbitration panel's decision Monday evening on how to integrate pilot seniority lists for a merged Delta and Northwest Airlines. Flight attendants from Delta and Northwest are currently working together on a joint campaign for representation by AFA-CWA.
"AFA-CWA uses one method of guaranteeing seniority for flight attendants, and that is date of hire. The fairest and most equitable way to protect seniority while honoring a flight attendant's length of service is through ‘date of hire' integration. AFA-CWA does not believe in outsourcing such important decisions to third party arbitrators. It is a highly risky, complicated and very time consuming process.
"In the past, we have seen the devastating effects that poor seniority integration can have on employee morale, which has a direct impact on the quality of service to passengers. That is why we worked with members of Congress last year for a new federal provision that prevents any flight attendant group from being forced to the bottom of a combined seniority list if a merger occurs. Date of hire should guide the process. Not only can we remove the anxiety and tension from the process, but we also save an incredible amount of time that can be used to begin work on a combined contract."
For over 60 years, the Association of Flight Attendants has been serving as the voice for flight attendants in the workplace, in the aviation industry, in the media and on Capitol Hill. More than 55,000 flight attendants at 20 airlines come together to form AFA-CWA, the world's largest flight attendant union. AFA is part of the 700,000-member strong Communications Workers of America (CWA), AFL-CIO. Visit us at www.afanet.org.