AFA Statement on May Jobs Report

Washington, DC (June 5, 2020) — Following the release of the May Jobs Report, AFA President Sara Nelson released the following statement:

“A recovery that treats people as disposable 'human capital stock' is no real recovery. The jobs report indicates that Americans began to return to work in May, but what it leaves out is that many of those people are being rushed back into unsafe conditions.

“Essential workers who were pushed to work without proper protections caught coronavirus. Many died. These essential workers are overwhelmingly Black, brown, indigenous and immigrant workers, especially women—the very people our system already treats as most disposable.

“It was possible from the beginning to fight the virus without massive unemployment or forcing workers into unsafe conditions. Across the world, countries are keeping people in their jobs—and ready to return to work—by directly funding payroll.

“We know that’s possible in the United States because it’s exactly what we achieved for aviation workers with the help of Democrats in the House and Senate.

“People need income. They need healthcare. They need childcare as they return to work, paid sick leave so we can keep the virus from spreading, and investment in our cities and states so critical services aren’t cut.

“Instead, Mitch McConnell is saying the Senate won’t take new action until after the August recess. By then it will be too late. Millions of workers are depending on the extra $600 a week in their unemployment check, but that help runs out in July. Thanks to the CARES Act, Flight Attendants and more than two million aviation workers have protections through September, but without action we will see hundreds of thousands of layoffs and furloughs when that aid runs out.

“It is not too late yet. We can guarantee jobs and income for every person in this country. We can guarantee healthcare, protect our schools and public services. We can create the jobs we’ll need to beat the virus, and to set ourselves on a path to a just recovery.

“If Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans refuse to act, the pain and suffering that will result is incalculable.

“AFA is committed to fighting for real relief for every person in this country, to guarantee each of us can live in safety, dignity and prosperity. We will keep fighting for our members, our families, our community and our entire country.”


The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, (AFA) AFL-CIO represents nearly 50,000 Flight Attendants at 19 airlines. AFA is the union that has advanced the Flight Attendant profession for 74 years, beating back discrimination and improving wages, benefits, working conditions, and aviation safety, health and security in the aircraft cabin. AFA also partners with the 700,000-member strong Communications Workers of America (CWA), AFL-CIO. Visit us at

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