American Airlines and US Airways Unions Agree To Work Together
Ground employees of US Airways and American Airlines will be represented by the two unions that represented the workers of each airline before the merger. The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers and the Transport Workers Union agreed to collaborate in representing the employees once the merger is finalized.
The two unions also have to deal with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, which indicated that it was able to gather a suitable number of signatures at US Airways for a representation election. It is also working on gathering a similar number at American Airlines.
The collaborative effort between the two unions came after a letter was sent by the president of the AFL-CIO. The letter encouraged the two unions to work for the welfare of the workers. The two unions are members of the AFL-CIO.
Paul Flanigan, a spokesman for American Airlines, commended the collaboration between the two unions. He indicated that the joint agreement demonstrates that the employees of the two airlines support the merger. Around 30,000 employees are represented by the two unions, which is over one-fourth of all the employees of the two companies.
The employees covered by the agreement between the two unions include maintenance workers, fleet service workers, and store maintenance workers.
The merger between America West Airlines and US Airways can be used as an example for the cooperation between the two unions. The Airline Customer Service Employees Association was formed from the Communication Workers of America and the Teamsters following the merger of the two airline companies in 2005. The group was certified by the National Mediation Board as the bargaining representative in 2006.
The two unions indicated that the partnership, which will be dubbed as the TWU/IAM Employee Association, will request an election to be held by NMB the among all the workers involved after the American Airlines and US Airways merger is finalized.