Flight Attendant Union Applauds DOT Approval for Norse Atlantic Airways

WASHINGTON, D.C. (January 14, 2022) – The Department of Transportation today granted the application of Norse Atlantic for exemption authority, and tentatively granted it a foreign air carrier permit. The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA and Norse Atlantic Airways reached a historic pre-hire agreement in May 2021 for good union jobs with job security in the U.S. 

“We applaud Secretary Pete Buttigieg and the Biden administration for approving this permit which will immediately create hundreds of U.S. union aviation jobs starting first in Florida and New York,” stated AFA President Sara Nelson. “Approving Norse Atlantic Airways’ permit with a legal commitment to workers’ rights provides results based on President Biden’s goals for increasing good-paying Union jobs. Norse management is demonstrating that the success of a business starts with respecting workers and investing in good, union jobs. The company will start the hiring process next week.”

Norse expects to create a minimum of 700 U.S.-based Flight Attendant jobs to start and agreed to union neutrality with joint application for certification by the National Mediation Board once the Flight Attendants demonstrate majority interest in representation with AFA. 

“Our hard work and commitment to our careers is paying off and raising the bar for Flight Attendants everywhere,” said Valentin Lorien, Flight Attendant on Norse pre-hire list. “We are ready to fly with the launch of Norse Atlantic Airways where we will officially form our union and ratify a contract with industry-leading starting pay, job protections, healthcare coverage, and a 401(k) among other key benefits. We applaud Secretary Buttigieg, Chairman Peter DeFazio, and President Biden for making it clear that they expect companies to respect workers’ rights and prioritize good jobs. Once we petition to form our union and ratify our contract we will have more union jobs in the U.S. and a higher standard for the rest of the industry to meet.”

The contract, subject to ratification by the Flight Attendants, specifically states, “The Company commits to directly employ all crew to ensure it is promoting fair competition, workers’ rights, and the highest standards in safety and employment regulations.” Additional language ensures Norse will maintain these jobs in the United States and protects against furloughs if Flight Attendants are also employed outside of the U.S.


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 www.afacwa.org

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