American Airlines is attempting to cut its costs in bankruptcy protection as its flight attendants have approved a new contract from the company. The vote taken by the flight attendants was in favor of the contract by a vote of 59.5 percent to 40.5 percent. The new contract for the flight attendants includes multiple concessions but it protects them from larger cuts that might have occurred in bankruptcy court.
The leaders for the union urged flight attendants to ratify the contract because some 2,000 flight attendants might have been forced to take furloughs or unpaid leave if they rejected the contract. Bruce Hicks, a spokesman for American Airlines, said that the vote “is an important step forward in our restructuring. We know this was not an easy decision for our flight attendants and we are very pleased with the choice they made.”
Other groups who have accepted new contracts include other union workers and mechanics. A recent offer has been declined by the pilots. The APFA said that the vote of ‘yes’ should not be viewed as support for the executives of American Airlines. “It is important to remember who and what has caused this horrible situation: our current management team.”
AMR Corp. is the parent company of American Airlines and it has been pushed by US Airways Group Inc. to merge together. The union also feels that a merger should take place if American Airlines is to succeed in the future. Earlier in 2012, unions with American Airlines agreed to contract proposals with US Airways in case the two companies merged together. Those union groups included ground crews, pilots and flight attendants.
Spending will decrease by $195 million per year, according to AMR, because of the new contract. The union said that 93 percent of flight attendants eligible to vote, which is 12,570, did so. Prior to the new contract for the flight attendants taking effect it will need to be ratified by the bankruptcy court.