Beginning in Guam and moving with the sun to Frankfurt, London, Newark, Chicago, Denver and across to California and Hawaii, United Airlines flight attendants on Thursday will be putting management on notice that this is “Our Time” and “If not Now, When?” They will be picketing at all United Airline hubs.
The merger between United and Continental is approaching five years, yet the battle for a decent contract now escalates. AFA-CWA President Sara Nelson has stated simply that the 24,000 flight attendants have waited too long and “we are going to stand up to make it clear to management that we expect a real increase in our standard of living, especially as management compensation and profits soar.”
CEO Jeff Smisek’s compensation is up 32 percent since the merger and operating profits are now exceeding $5 billion annually. United has $7 billion in cash and the stock price is up 162 percent since the merger.
Thursday’s global day of action and the battle for a fair contract are symbolic of the corporate profit and power grab that is strangling our nation. Details for the actions are at ourcontract.org.
If you are passing through a United hub on Thursday or can get to one, join the pickets. If enough of us are there together, we’ll all start winning.
Larry Cohen’s ten years as president of the Communications Workers of America ended on June 9. He is a fellow at Campaign for America’s Future, Chair of the Democracy Initiative and continues to Stand Up and Fight Back!