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The starting salary for a new flight attendant at American Airlines is low enough to qualify for food stamps in some states

The starting salary for a new flight attendant at American Airlines is low enough to qualify for food stamps in some states

that Employment verification letter From American Airlines Trending on Reddit It attracted attention due to the low starting wages of some newly hired flight attendants. The letter, which states that a new flight attendant at American Airlines will earn an expected annual salary of $27,315 before bonuses and taxes are combined, has sparked discussions about fair wages for flight attendants and how inflationary price hikes are making life unaffordable for many Americans — even if the economy and labor markets Looks good on paper.

The union that represents American Airlines workers, called the Association of Professional Flight Attendants, verified the authenticity of the letter, according to CNN mentionedwhich are issued to potential landlords or other services where hosts need to verify their employment and income.

While the salary mentioned in the letter above Federal poverty line At $15,060 for a single-person household, this figure does not reflect the true cost of living nationally, which can be much higher in major metropolitan areas.

The union also called for a lower starting wage, which for a single-income family meets the eligibility criteria for the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), or food stamp benefits, in many states including Massachusetts And New York.

The union is also drawing attention to a growing issue of “corporate greed” by drawing comparisons between the wages a flight attendant could earn versus what the company’s CEO, Robert Isom, earns.

The starting salary for a new flight attendant is approx $27,000 annuallywhich is just a small part of the CEO $31.4 million earned last year– An amount 1,162 times greater than the new employee’s income.

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American Airlines did not immediately respond luckRequest for comment.

To be sure, a host of challenges lie between the union representing American Airlines flight attendants and management. Under a federal law called Railway Labor LawWorkers and union members in the aviation and railway industries are not allowed to strike without permission from the government. Federal mediation groups, e.g National Mediation Council, It could allow such permission by declaring a deadlock in negotiations between American Airlines and the union group, or by allowing the union to pursue a potential strike.

The last contract negotiated by the union was signed in 2014, according to A November update By the association, workers have been without a raise since 2019.

“Flight attendants are front-line workers left to bear the weight of inflation without the compensation needed to keep up with the industry,” the association wrote in a statement, adding that the quality of life of flight attendants “could be improved through a new collective bargaining agreement.” ”

Recently, the union has been pushing for a new contract to raise hourly wages, joining flight attendants from other airlines, including United Airlines, Alaska Airlinesand Southwest, which is making similar demands.

Ensuring that flight attendants are paid correctly is especially important since their work model involves long hours of unpaid work. On average, hosts only commute full time 75 paid hours each monthPayment often officially begins as soon as… The plane doors closerather than compensation that also represents the hours they need to be at the airport or on the plane during the boarding process.

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“One of the most stressful parts of the flying experience is during the boarding process,” the union wrote in a May 20 statement. summaryAdding: “However, we do not receive payment for this work.”

The union wrote that securing accommodation wages “constitutes an important step in addressing this historical injustice.” Other airlines have made these changes significantly, albeit slowly. In June 2022, Delta Air Lines Charge a boarding fee For flight attendants, workers advance Half hourly price During the ascension after facing threats of a union campaign. However, Delta is the only major US airline that Flight attendants are not unionized.

The union is now proposing a 33% wage increase with a maximum of $91 an hour during the first year of the new contract, with wage increases of 5%, 4% and 4% for the remaining years of the four-year agreement. It also calls for retroactive pay increases based on how much attendees worked during the last five years of negotiations.

American Airlines “refused to budge on a higher rate of $76 per hour, plus boarding pay and other improvements,” the union wrote in the summary, but the company included benefits like boarding pay, higher 401K matching contributions, and profit sharing in the same breath. the time. Formula as pilots in the union’s latest contract proposal.

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