ATLANTA: Flight attendants for Delta Airlines staged a pre-Labor
Day rally to promote an election campaign for union representation. The
Association of Flight Attendants' (AFA) management has also accused the
airline of running an illegal anti-union campaign.
Delta flight attendants have never been represented by a union, making
the carrier unique among major airlines. By the flight attendants' own
admission, they are among the highest paid in the industry.
But salaries are not the point, according to Tricom Associates, the PR
agency that has worked with the AFA for two years on a project
The union's message focuses on the way changes in work rules impact
customer service. "Basically, we are trying to make the public aware
that it is an issue about taking care of customers," said Scott
Treibitz, the agency's president. "The union wants a say in how work
rules are determined."
The rally was held in Washington, DC, as the petition for a vote was
filed with the National Mediation Board (NMB). Union members from across
industries gathered to show support.
The NMB will verify the petitions over the next 60 days, and will then
set a date for an election.
Delta is expressing confidence that the flight attendants will vote
against unionization. "Delta flight attendants currently enjoy the best
pay, benefits, and working conditions in the industry," said
spokesperson Peggy Estes in a statement. "They have consistently
resisted union organizing efforts, and we believe they will continue to
In a press release, the union accused Delta of operating an illegal
anti-union campaign. "Management has formed and assisted in-house
committees designed by their anti-union consultants to address
bargaining subjects through company-dominated committees, and to serve
as a voice for the company's anti-union campaign," the release read.