American Airlines flight attendants fight for better pay as busy travel week rolls in

CHARLOTTE — The holiday travel rush is in full swing but if you plan to travel, American Airlines is dealing with some issues.

This might be the biggest week in the history of any airline, but American Airlines is not one happy family.

On Monday, the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) is expected to call for an end to labor meditation. If that happens, that will start a 30-day countdown before flight attendants can go on a possible strike.

Association officials told Channel 9 reporter Glenn Counts that the two sides are far apart.

The airline is offering approximately an 11% raise and the workers are seeking in the ballpark of what Southwest’s flight attendants got which is more than 20%.

Even though the issue would not affect holiday travel, it still got the attention of passengers.

“I want the staff to be taken care of cause I’m a nurse so I know what it is to be working hard and being underpaid,” passenger Cris Windr said.

Some passengers are not happy about the possible disruption.

“There are a lot of people that pay good money to fly, to have that privilege to fly,” Nick Melitis said. “As an employee, I would hope that they would consider that what they are doing is very disruptive.”

Others seem to agree with the flight attendants citing the financial struggles many across the country and world face in the present day.

“These days have been really hard on a lot of folks and a lot of times you need to band together to be fairly compensated,” Tera Harvey said.

For Joey Shepherd, a strike could be a double-edged sword for both workers and passengers.

“That’s a tough question, it’s a balance, I would kind of feel bad for both,” Shepherd said, “Primarily I would say if they are not getting a fair wage then that should take priority.”

Even though the vote will not affect holiday travel, it could be an issue sometime in January.

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