AFA Files Application to Unify United and Continental Flight Attendants in One Union
January 18, 2011
NMB Ruling Would Trigger Union Election for 24,000 at New United Airlines
Chicago – The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA) today asked the National Mediation Board (NMB) to declare that the United/Continental merger has created a single-carrier, triggering a union representation election for the combined Flight Attendant workforce. Over 15,000 United Flight Attendants already are represented by AFA.
“This merger and the extraordinary financial turnaround underway at United are only possible because Flight Attendants at both airlines have invested hard work and sacrifices over the years,” said Greg Davidowitch, AFA United President. “Management must know that the Flight Attendant workforce is unified, and that we expect the best Flight Attendant contract at the world’s leading airline. Joined together in AFA we can ensure Flight Attendants are full partners in the merger with compensation, work rules and benefits that reflect our key role in the success of the new United Airlines.”
“Once the election is concluded, management will have no more excuses for failing to negotiate on the priorities set by Flight Attendants,” Davidowitch continued. “This merger will be successful when it works for Flight Attendants and other employees as well as shareholders. There is much to be gained by all constituencies and Flight Attendants will do better when standing together.”
Once the NMB declares that the merged airlines are operating as a single carrier, an election date will be set to determine if AFA will be the Flight Attendants’ exclusive bargaining agent for the combined Flight Attendant workforce. With approximately 24,000 Flight Attendants eligible to vote, the election will be among the largest ever conducted by the NMB, the federal agency charged with overseeing union elections and the collective bargaining process in the airline industry.
“As the world’s largest Flight Attendant union, run by and for Flight Attendants, this is a wonderful opportunity to welcome our flying partners at Continental to our union,” said Veda Shook, AFA International President. “AFA has been the leader in advancing the Flight Attendant profession since a group of United Flight Attendants joined together in 1945 to create our union. Throughout the years, AFA has fought for and won major changes in our industry; we have transformed our profession, raising wages, benefits and working conditions and improving safety and security. In welcoming our Continental colleagues, we will continue to make great strides for Flight Attendants and their families.”
Nearly 50,000 Flight Attendants, including the 15,000 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.