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Cabin Crew Union Ready To Work With New Administration

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The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA), the world’s largest flight attendant union, supported Barack Obama in his Presidential campaign, urging its membership to cast their votes in his favor. Now that Mr. Obama has succeeded in his quest for the highest political office in the United States, the union is looking forward “to continuing work on the many important flight attendant issues that have been suppressed throughout the previous administration.”

Here is the text of a statement issued today by the AFA:
“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.
AFA-CWA represents more than 55,000 flight attendants at 20 airlines. AFA is part of the 700,000-member strong Communications Workers of America (CWA), AFL-CIO.

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