JetBlue-Spirit Merger

AFA-CWA strongly supports the jetBlue-Spirit merger for these reasons:

Immediate Raises Now: We have reached a tentative agreement with Spirit to, upon ratification, increase wages by 10-27 percent immediately, continued raises locked in for the next two years, and other immediate improvements for Flight Attendant schedules. This was a significant investment in workers and showing of good faith from an airline that has yet to return to profitability in the wake of the pandemic.

No Furloughs or Displacements, Added Job Security: We have a written commitment from jetBlue that becomes effective post-merger and includes no-furlough protections, a commitment to seniority integration under the law that protects the seniority each Flight Attendant has accrued at their respective carries, no displacements, and a "second bite at the apple" through an expedited process for joint contract negotiations ensuring that Flight Attendants further improve wages and working conditions by sharing in the value created by the merger.

Added Competition: The jetBlue-Spirit merger will add competition to the current dominance of the four airlines controlling 81 percent of the entire market and increase access to Flight Attendant jobs that provide pay, benefits, and working conditions among the best in the industry.

No Two-Tiered Employment: jetBlue does not currently utilize the regional business model, where Flight Attendants are paid on average 45% less, and has no plans to introduce it with the merged carrier. This is significant as it adds access to good aviation jobs and sets a new model that will pressure other airlines to compete with jobs set to the highest standards.

Far Better Working Conditions: The jetBlue-Spirit merger will result in reconfiguration of all Spirit aircraft from 28” seat pitch minimum (worst in the industry) to 32” seat pitch minimum (best in the industry), creating a better cabin environment for Flight Attendants and passengers alike. Cramped conditions often contribute to passenger anger and far too frequent abuse of frontline workers.

Update: Our AFA leadership at Spirit is already working closely with AFA International President Sara Nelson along with our attorneys.

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