Northwest Flight Attendants Strike Temporarily Blocked
August 25, 2006
New York, NY - A United States District Court judge today temporarily blocked a planned strike by Northwest flight attendants until he has time to review the case. Judge Victor Marrero said a decision could come as early as next week on whether to grant Northwest Airlines an injunction that would prevent the flight attendants, represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA), from striking in response to the company's rejection of their collective bargaining agreement.
"Management and the courts can stall us, but they cannot defeat us," said Mollie Reiley, Interim Master Executive Council President. "Our crusade to protect our careers has only begun. We will continue to fight for Northwest flight attendants and all flight attendants who will walk in our footsteps."
On July 31, the company imposed terms outlined in a tentative agreement that was overwhelmingly rejected by the flight attendants months earlier. The terms consisted of over 40 percent reductions in salary and benefits and as much as 25 percent additional work hours. AFA-CWA issued the company notice of their intent to strike as early as August 25 at 9:01 pm CDT. Under the Railway Labor Act, any unilateral change in a contract triggers a right to strike. Following the strike notice, the company quickly filed for an injunction, but a federal bankruptcy court denied the motion earlier this month.
While the judge considers his ruling, Northwest flight attendants continue to count down for CHAOS™. CHAOS, or Create Havoc Around Our System™, is AFA-CWA's trademarked strategy of targeted work actions using random, unannounced strikes.
"We will continue to prepare ourselves and our members for CHAOS; this is NOT over," said Reiley. "Something is terribly wrong when a company that just made a quarterly operating profit of nearly $200 million continues to insist on the same cuts it demanded from flight attendants when it was losing money."
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 attendant, including 9,200 at Northwest, 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.nwaafa.org.