Ground Workers Plan Massive Picket Against American Airlines at SFO
Transport Workers Union Locals Have a Message for CEO Doug Parker: Outsourcing Doesn’t Fly Here
On Monday, two TWU locals representing Aircraft Maintenance, Fleet Service, Facilities/Ground Support and Stores members at the world’s largest airline will picket American Airlines at SFO airport. TWU Locals 505 and 591 will host TWU leadership, officers, and members of labor organizations from around the country, including APA, APFA, CWA, IBT, and IAM. Their primary message is to shed light on American’s latest plan to outsource many more U.S. based jobs overseas and to outside vendors. The demonstration will also call on the company to start bargaining in good faith and to deliver on the “industry’s best contract” its executives have been promising for nearly two years.
At the heart of the issue lies the safety of the traveling public and our flight crews, as American plans to outsource a substantial portion of its aircraft maintenance work to places like Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and China – an attempt to increase profits because the cost of doing maintenance there is cheaper. The company has also announced a plan to invest $100 million into a new aircraft maintenance facility in Brazil that will be staffed with foreign workers, a large majority of whom are not certified by the FAA. While American Airlines CEO Doug Parker complains about unfair competition from foreign airlines flying in the United States, he is lobbying for his own company to offshore the majority of its aircraft inspections and maintenance to the lowest foreign bidder.
American has also outsourced its security inspections and aircraft cleaning to third party contractors that pay their employees minimum wage. This results in a high employee turnover and lack of experience, which could compromise safety and security.
After 9/11, American Airlines asked TWU to tighten their belts to help the airline financially, in order to keep the company afloat – and they did. In 2012, management took American into bankruptcy with nearly $4 billion in the bank, forcing more concessions onto the very workforce that saved them. Today, as the airline makes billions per quarter and the executives continue to reward themselves in compensation and bonuses, TWU members have seen very little. American Airlines is making profits like never before, but the way the company treats it workers, and the attention to detail and quality for the traveling public remains abysmal. Now, TWU members at American are standing united to tell CEO Doug Parker that it’s industry best, and nothing less.