AFA Applauds DOJ Action to Charge Violent Passenger, Pushes for More Action

WASHINGTON, DC (November 1, 2021) — On Monday, the Justice Department announced that a California man has been charged with interference with a flight crew and assault within the special aircraft jurisdiction of the United States, following an incident last week. Association of Flight Attendant-CWA International President Sara Nelson released the following statement:

"We applaud the Department of Justice for moving swiftly to charge this violent passenger after assaulting a Flight Attendant last week. The vitriol, verbal and physical abuse from a small group of passengers - yet at a steady rate - is unacceptable and puts everyone onboard at risk. This is not a new normal we are willing to accept. The federal government, airlines and airports must redouble efforts to hold every disruptive passenger accountable.

"While the Federal Aviation Administration has moved to zero-tolerance policies and levied an unprecedented number of civil penalties, the DOJ publicly prosecuting is the only way to truly get the attention of bad actors. We continue to call for the creation of a centralized list of violators denied the ability to fly across aviation. If a passenger physically assaults crewmembers or other passengers on one airline, they pose a risk to passengers and crew at every airline, and should be banned from flying on all airlines period.”


The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, (AFA) AFL-CIO represents nearly 50,000 Flight Attendants at 17 airlines. AFA is the union that has advanced the Flight Attendant profession for 75 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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