Dec 5, 2013
AFA-CWA is fighting a new FCC proposal that would allow passengers to make in-flight cell phone calls.
Flight Attendants, as first responders and the last line of defense in our nation's aviation system, understand the importance of maintaining a calm cabin environment. Any situation that is loud, divisive, and possibly disruptive is not only unwelcome, but also unsafe. In far too many operational scenarios, passengers making phone calls could extend beyond a mere nuisance, creating negative effects on aviation safety and security that are great and far too risky. Flight Attendants also are concerned that in emergencies, cell phone use would drown out announcements and distract from life-saving instructions from the crew.
"We're trained to de-escalate. Why would you put something in the environment that can escalate?" said AFA-CWA President Veda Shook. "On an airplane, there's no such thing as a quiet car. It's a confined metal tube thousands of feet in the air. It would be no different from having a smoking section on a small plane."
Over the years, a number of surveys have said that the traveling public also wants to maintain the ban on in-flight phone calls. After the FCC announced it would consider revising the rules on in-flight phone calls, a HuffPost/YouGov poll found that 49 percent of Americans would not want cell phones allowed on planes if the FCC determines that it's safe.