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Flight Attendants at American Eagle Carrier Piedmont Vote to Strike

Date: 10/21/2021

Flight Attendants at American Eagle carrier Piedmont overwhelmingly voted to authorize a strike, with 100% in support of authorizing the strike.

“Piedmont Flight Attendants are speaking with one voice to demand management get serious about resolving our contract,” said Keturah Johnson, AFA Piedmont President. “Flight Attendants kept Piedmont flying through the pandemic. How does management thank us? By offering a ‘deal’ that would mean cuts to our take-home pay. We are already paid less than our counterparts at other regional carriers, and far less than mainline flight attendants doing the same work at the American Airlines Group. Enough is enough. Piedmont Flight Attendants can’t afford to work at Piedmont.”

Piedmont Flight Attendants and allies took the contract fight public today, picketing outside of Philadelphia International Airport following the strike vote.

Flight Attendants represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA have been engaged in contract negotiations for more than three years. Negotiations stalled after management put forward an offer with minimal pay increases that are offset by higher health premiums. Taken together, Flight Attendants would earn less under the contract proposed by Piedmont.

“We’ve seen in the last few months how delicate the aviation system is, and how much it depends on every worker. The Flight Attendants at Piedmont are sending a message to management and to our entire industry,” said AFA International President Sara Nelson. “Workers across the country are on strike right now to end two-tier employment systems where workers earn less for the same jobs. Regional Flight Attendants earn as much as forty-five percent less for the same work, and Piedmont is at the bottom of the scale. Piedmont Flight Attendants want a fair deal, but if it takes a strike we’ve got their backs across the industry.”

Following the 100% strike vote with 75.4% participating, AFA could request that the National Mediation Board (NMB) declare that negotiations are deadlocked and release both parties into a 30-day "cooling off" period, which would then lead to a strike deadline. AFA has a trademarked strike strategy known as CHAOS™ or Create Havoc Around Our System™. With CHAOS, a strike could affect the entire system or a single flight. The union decides when, where and how to strike without notice to management or passengers. US-based carriers are still trying to recover to full staffing following the pandemic, and staff shortages have caused significant operational issues at Southwest, Spirit, American and Delta in recent months. Even the disruption of a few flights could threaten operations across the American Airlines Group system. 

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