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Union rejects American Airlines' latest proposal offering 17% wage hikes

Published 06/05/2024, 01:07 PM
Updated 06/05/2024, 08:20 PM
© Reuters. An American Airlines commercial aircraft approaches to land at John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana, California U.S. January 18, 2022. REUTERS/Mike Blake

By Rajesh Kumar Singh

CHICAGO (Reuters) - The Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA), which represents over 23,000 American flight attendants, said on Wednesday that it unanimously rejects the latest proposal from American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL).

The airline had offered its flights attendants immediate wage increases of 17% and a new formula for higher profit sharing in 2024 in their new contracts, CEO Robert Isom said earlier in the day.

The union said the latest offer of a raise comes without reaching an agreement on a complete contract, adding that "American Airlines Flight Attendants want and need a complete contract addressing all our concerns."

"We have a strike vote authorization of 99.47 percent, have picketed for months, and have demonstrated our resolve and solidarity. Our message has been crystal clear: we need an industry-leading contract," the APFA said.

The current round of negotiations started in January 2020 but was paused at the height of the pandemic. Talks resumed in June 2021.

The union has asked its workers to prepare for a strike after the negotiations last month failed to produce an agreement.

© Reuters. An American Airlines commercial aircraft approaches to land at John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana, California U.S. January 18, 2022. REUTERS/Mike Blake

American Airlines' flight attendants say they have not had a pay raise in over five years and have asked for an immediate raise of about 33%. Union officials say flight attendants have endured a lot since the pandemic - notably unruly passengers resisting the controversial mask mandate on planes.

The two sides are due to resume negotiations next week. The APFA has requested a release from federally mediated negotiations, saying American's offers "continue to fall far short of addressing the current economic environment."

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