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Crew Member Self Defense Training Program (CMSDT)

Date: July 30, 2021

As we’ve been reporting over the past several weeks, we have never seen the level of unruly behavior from passengers on the aircraft as we have over the past several weeks. 

AFA has been a staunch advocate for requiring passengers to comply with directions given by Flight Attendants, for reducing the sale of alcohol on the aircraft and at engaging management to discuss the changing environment in the areas of the terminal adjacent to departure gates where “to go” alcohol has never been more readily available.    We’ve enlisted the assistance of the Federal Aviation Administration and the TSA to ensure the messaging to the general public leaves no question as to the expectation when traveling as a passenger on the aircraft and while transiting public airports.

Despite these efforts, we continue to receive reports of unruly passenger behavior and Flight Attendants continue to express their concern for their safety as well as that of the passengers entrusted to their care. 

As Flight Attendants, we are first responders in these situations and the unique nature of these situations make it necessary that we call upon our ability to protect ourselves, our flying partners, our passengers and, when necessary, even the aircraft. 

Our training drives situational awareness and, as a result, Flight Attendants are prepared and one step ahead of the game.

Working in the aircraft cabin at 35,000 feet and the nature of potential conflict in that environment is unique and often misunderstood by those who aren’t accustomed to working in that environment where, when least expected, we can be called upon to support and protect each other.

It’s been a while since we’ve brought to the forefront the unique training opportunities made available by the TSA Office of Law Enforcement/Federal Air Marshal Service. As Flight Attendants, we can be prepared in these situations by attending the Crew Member Self Defense Training Program.

The Crew Member Self Defense Training (CMSDT) program is available to all actively employed or temporarily furloughed U.S. carrier Flight Attendants. The program is delivered at more than twenty sites throughout the United States and those who wish to take advantage of this opportunity may attend a one-day “hands-on” training at one of the participating training sites. CMSDT is provided at no cost and Flight Attendants are welcome to attend the training as often as desired.

Contact the CMSDT Program by the following link at the TSA Website with questions about the program or how to register.

In addition, we have a link to training information available in the Safety Section of our website.   Access our website under the “Safety” tab, click on “Training” and in the “Resources” Box click on “TSA: Crew Member Self Defense Training Program”.   Currently scheduled class dates and locations are listed here. Additional dates and locations will be posted as they become available.

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