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Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants Eye Boarding Pay After Historic Win By Delta Crew Members

Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants Eye Boarding Pay After Historic Win By Delta Crew Members

An Alaska Airlines 737 aircraft comes into land

Flight Attendants at Alaska Airlines are officially eyeing boarding pay after Delta Air Lines made history by becoming the first major U.S. airline to pay its crew members for boarding.

Alaska Airlines is due to start contract negotiations with the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA-CWA) and boarding pay is expected to be at the very top of the agenda following Delta’s move.

“Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants definitely deserve boarding pay, and boarding pay will be in our opening proposal to management,” the union told Alaska flight attendants on Tuesday after details of Delta’s offer were leaked.

From early June, Delta will pay flight attendants 50 percent of their usual hourly rate for boarding.  Flight attendants are expected to make at least an additional $4,000 per year as a result of the decision.

The surprise gesture comes as Delta seeks to head off a renewed push by AFA to unionize its flight attendants.  The airline also hopes to calm disquiet over a decision to increase boarding time on domestic single-aisle services to 40 minutes prior to departure

“Regardless of the underlying circumstances, the implementation of boarding pay for cabin crew at a major airline has major implications for collective bargaining in the US aviation industry going forward–including our upcoming negotiations,” the local Alaska Airlines branch of AFA told flight attendants.

Flight attendants at American Airlines are also seeking boarding pay after adding the demand to a raft of proposals in its own contract negotiations with management.  The proposal was only added after direct feedback from flight attendants who are increasingly fed up with the traditional pay structure.

The Association of Flight Attendants hopes to lock boarding pay into a collective bargaining agreement which can’t then be removed by management.  The union has warned that Delta management could end boarding pay at any time.

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