US Airways Continues Downward Spiral as Labor Woes Intensify
February 28, 2008
Employees Picket, Demand Management Address Labor Issues
PHOENIX – US Airways employees today demanded that management address labor's issues and work with labor to turnaround the fledgling airline. Employees picketed corporate headquarters with a large, 30-foot rat as a symbol of US Airways management's anti-labor tactics to date. Following is a statement from the US Airways Labor Coalition, which represents the customer service representatives, dispatchers, fleet service, flight attendants, flight crew training instructors, maintenance training specialists, mechanic and related, pilots, simulator engineers, and all other labor groups at US Airways.
"Shared fury and frustration among the employees of US Airways brought us together today in an effort to get management to complete the merger that began nearly three years ago. We are furious over being the poster child for what not to do in a merger. We are frustrated with management's hands-off approach to resolving labor issues.
"Instead of working with labor to develop long-term solutions that would fix the problems plaguing our airline, US Airways management continues employing tactics to demoralize its labor force. As a result, employee morale is at an all-time low, our stock has plummeted, and our passengers are left holding their bags. Management's quick-fix is to hire executives and bunker down together to ignore these problems, hoping that they will resolve themselves.
"Management's most recent attempts to depict an airline that has finally turned the corner toward success will not fool anyone. When compared with its peers, US Airways continues to rank at or near the bottom in terms of customer complaints and other categories tracked by the government, and the only reason the airline was number one in on-time performance was because management has mastered the art of manipulating statistics. Management wasted millions of dollars—money that belonged to our employees, passengers and investors—to create this illusion rather than work with labor.
"We want to work for a successful airline—one that is a positive example of how a merger should be conducted. It's time for management to empower the employees with the necessary tools to do their jobs effectively. Specifically, management needs to adhere to current labor contracts and reach new collective bargaining agreements that improve the wages, benefits and working conditions of all US Airways employees."
The US Airways Labor Coalition represents approximately 30,000 employees from the two merged carriers— America West and US Airways. The pilots are represented by the Air Line Pilots Association, Int'l. (ALPA). The flight attendants are represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA). The customer service representatives are represented by the Airline Customer Service Employee Association–IBT/CWA. The fleet service, mechanic and related, and maintenance training specialist employees are represented by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM). The dispatchers, flight crew training instructors and simulator engineers are represented by the Transport Workers Union of America (TWU).
Captain Tania Bziukiewicz, (602) 214-3490; (602) 306-1208
Lydia Jakub, (602) 794-2882; (480) 586-5873
Gary Richardson, (602) 625-5573
Mike Flores, (704) 576-3174