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New administration to bring anticipated advancements for Flight Attendants

Date: November 5, 2008

Washington, DC – As the world prepares for a new United States president and a Barack Obama administration, the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA) looks forward to continuing work on the many important flight attendant issues that have been suppressed throughout the previous administration.

"For far too long, corporate interests have trumped those of flight attendants and we are thrilled to work alongside the next administration in putting an end to that era," said AFA-CWA International President Patricia Friend. "Flight attendants across the country are eager to advance our profession and finally gain important protections that are long overdue. It is time that flight attendants receive Family and Medical Leave (FMLA) benefits that other U.S. employees enjoy and it is time that reasoned bankruptcy reform is enacted that finally puts an end to the corporate greed that has handicapped our industry."

In addition to FMLA and bankruptcy reform, AFA-CWA has repeatedly called for a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization that would include overall safety initiatives for flight attendants. Issues that have been repeatedly ignored by the previous FAA include flight attendant fatigue, workplace safety and health protections (OSHA), cabin air quality, and carry-on baggage requirements.

"The uphill battle we have been fighting will lead to the realization of the many, long-awaited changes necessary to advance our profession. We still have much work to do to achieve a brighter future. Now is a time of opportunity and we will continue working for positive change so that we might look back, at some point in the future, and marvel at how far we have come," said Friend.

This election season, flight attendants across the country took part in a program called Labor 2008. In over a dozen states, Labor 2008 activists reached out to local union members regarding the importance of the election. By discussing national and local issues, AFA-CWA members ensured other union workers understood how this election would impact their lives in the future.

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.

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