Breeze Airways flight attendants file for union election – Daily News

on Jan23
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Just two weeks after announcing their campaign to unionize with the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, AFL-CIO, Breeze Airways flight attendants have filed for an election with the National Mediation Board.

Flight attendants with the low-cost airline have long complained of constantly-changing work rules, low wages for time on the job, substandard hotel accommodations, insufficient work hours and disrespectful treatment from management.

AFA International President Sara Nelson said the workers have organized “faster than almost any campaign I’ve ever seen.”

“The solidarity and recognition of their worth is inspiring,” Nelson said in a statement. “We can’t wait to make the union they’ve built together official with this election.”

Representatives with Breeze Airways could not be reached for comment.

The employees are awaiting an election date from the National Mediation Board (NMB) under procedures defined by the Railway Labor Act. NMB is the federal agency that oversees union representation elections for air and rail workers.

Breeze doesn’t have any flight attendants based out of Los Angeles International Airport, John Wayne Airport or San Bernardino International Airport, although the airline operates flight routes through those locations.

“Breeze Flight Attendants just showed management and the world that they are united behind a common purpose and are ready to do what’s necessary to secure dignity and voice at work,” Nelson said.

Earlier this month, Breeze announced it would be adding eight new nonstop routes this spring, including its first service from San Diego — to Cincinnati, Jacksonville, Norfolk, Raleigh-Durham and Pittsburgh, all of which are new routes from San Diego International.

Headquartered in Utah, Breeze began operation in May 2021. The airline is growing and already has nearly 600 flight attendants. Breeze pilots won an election for union representation with the Air Line Pilots Association in August 2022.

The airline was founded by David Neeleman, who previously co-founded Morris Air, WestJet, JetBlue and Azul Linhas Aereas.

Breeze employees aren’t the only ones complaining about wages and work conditions.

Alaska Airlines flight attendants picketed John Wayne Airport and LAX last month, saying they’re underpaid and not being compensated for the time they spend boarding, deplaning and waiting between flights.

The employees, represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, announced they would begin gathering strike authorization votes amid stalled contract negotiations.

The pickets and announcement were happening in conjunction with similar events at Alaska Airlines hubs across the country that included thousands of flight attendants for a “nationwide day of action.”

Nearly 970 Alaska flight attendants are based out of LAX, although many fly in and out of John Wayne Airport in Orange County, Ontario International Airport and Hollywood Burbank Airport.

And United Airlines flight attendants picketed LAX for the second time in December, claiming they’re also underpaid and not being compensated for the time they spend boarding, deplaning and waiting between flights.

They’re also seeking rules that give more control of their time and compensate them when operations are disrupted by weather or staffing shortages, and they want management to improve their health insurance coverage and other workplace benefits.

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