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United Airlines Flight Attendant Retirees Protest Proposed Benefit Cuts in New York City

Date: January 27, 2004

The picketing and leafleting event scheduled for tomorrow, January 28th, in New York City has been cancelled due to the extreme weather. Local Council 5 and Council 6 appreciate all of you who were poised and eager to take part in this event. Please help us spread the word to retirees and Members without e-mail access, and be ready to ACT again in the near future.

Leafleting and Picketing, Wednesday Jan. 28th 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
The Yale Club, 50 Vanderbilt Avenue, Manhattan

Major Announcement and Protests at Airports
Around the World Scheduled for Feb. 2

NEW YORK, NY — Retired United Airlines flight attendants, represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, AFL-CIO, will be informing passengers about United’s attempt to hurt retirees by drastically increasing the cost of retiree health benefits. Flight attendants will be picketing and leafleting from 11:30 am until 1:30 p.m. outside of the Wings Club Monthly Flyer Luncheon where United CEO Glenn Tilton will be the guest speaker. The luncheon will be held at the Yale Club, 50 Vanderbilt Ave. in Manhattan.

United management signed a letter of agreement in May 2003 to ensure that flight attendants retiring before July 1, 2003 would have access to health care benefits that were less costly and more comprehensive than those that would be in place for those who retire after that date. Based on that agreement, over 2,500 flight attendants retired before the July 1 deadline, only to find out just six months later that United intends to double cross them and cut their benefits.

The flight attendants will be making a major announcement at Chicago O’Hare Airport on Feb 2. On that same day, current United employees and retired flight attendants will also be leafleting and picketing at airports and public landmarks around the world on Feb. 2. Specific details about the press conference and local events will be distributed later this week.

AFA has received hundreds of calls from retirees asking if anything can be done through the courts to help protect them. All say they cannot afford the massive financial hit they will take after United forces them to pay hundreds of dollars per month of their already modest pensions just to continue health insurance. AFA’s leaders are reviewing a number of legal options with the union’s attorneys.

More than 46,000 flight attendants, including the 21,000 flight attendants at United, join together to form AFA, the world’s largest flight attendant union. AFA is part of the 700,000 member strong Communications Workers of America, AFL-CIO. Visit us at www.unitedafa.org.

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