United Flight Attendants to Picket Systemwide Over Operational Issues

CHICAGO (September 27, 2022) – United Airlines flight attendants, represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA), today picketed at 15 airports to demand United Airlines fix ongoing operational disruptions and focus on labor relations that support people on the frontlines.

According to FlightAware, United Airlines has delayed 67,485 flights and canceled 6,780 flights since May 1, 2022. Aviation can be disrupted for reasons outside the airline’s control, but good management understands this and builds an operation that can adapt and recover from disruption. United management’s failure to properly staff crew schedulers, the flight attendant support team, catering and more has exacerbated these operational issues and left passengers and Flight Attendants waiting for answers for hours at a time.

“Good isn’t leading the way at United. Flight attendants are fed up and showing up to the picket line,” said Ken Diaz, president of AFA’s United Airlines chapter. “This summer was one of the worst in recent history at United. Passengers bore the brunt and so did Flight Attendants. It's time for management to acknowledge these problems and get to work with our union to fix them before the holiday travel season begins. The issues can’t wait.”

Flight attendants are on the frontlines when an operational meltdown occurs, and they are expected to address passenger concerns. But recently Flight Attendants have been left empty handed or stranded themselves without support from management who are running the airline. AFA has offered solutions to these problems, but management has yet to acknowledge there is a problem. That’s why Flight Attendants are hitting the street and telling United management to work with the union.

United management keeps expecting Flight Attendants “to make it work.” Meanwhile, management blames others – air traffic control, Flight Attendants, Pilots – but themselves for operational issues. Just last week, management caused a day of cancellations after failing to do mandatory inspections for some of its Boeing 777-200 planes.

United Flight Attendants picketed at 15 airports across the U.S., Guam, and London.

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