Sep 19, 2013
CWA Local 1171 President Tom Gunning speaks at the rally outside the U.S. Capitol.
Below: Hundreds of activists at the fly-in ask their allies in Congress to urge the Justice Department to settle its lawsuit against the airlines’ pending merger.
Hundreds of pilots, Flight Attendants, mechanics, technicians, aircraft dispatchers, call center representatives, passenger service agents and fleet service employees rallied on Capitol Hill this week to make the case for proposed merger between American Airlines and US Airways.
Over two days, they met with more than 50 senators and nearly 300 House members, urging them to lend their support a deal that would give all 70,000 workers job security. The merger has been stalled since last month when the Justice Department and six state attorneys general filed lawsuits against American and US Airways to block the deal.
"For employees, there's no question that the merger of US Airways and American Airlines is very positive," said Tom Gunning, president of CWA Local 1171, one of many locals representing nearly 15,000 CWA and AFA-CWA workers at US Airways. "It will create a stronger, more competitive airline, one that will provide better service and more options to passengers than either of our airlines could do alone. That kind of competition is good for passengers."
He added, "At US Airways, we've already suffered through very turbulent times in our industry. My co-workers and I have suffered through two bankruptcies, pay cuts and that sinking feeling that things might never turn around. American Airlines workers have lost jobs and seen their benefits slashed. Their airline remains in bankruptcy. This merger finally is the opportunity for all our sacrifices to be rewarded."
Activists also included members of AFA-CWA, APA, APFA, IBT, TWU and USAPA.
A federal judge is scheduled to hear the case on Nov. 25.