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Hawaiian Air Cabin Crew Strike threatens holiday travel season for Hawaii?

Hawaiian Air Cabin Crew Strike threatens holiday travel season for Hawaii?

Over the last 6 months, Hawaiian Airlines Flight Attendants have been picketing at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu, Hawaii, and at LAX Airport in Los Angeles, California.

The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, which represents the Hawaiian Air Flight Attendants, said that a vote taken today, resulted in an overwhelming 99.9% tally to authorize a strike.

The union stated that Hawaiian Air Flight Attendants are paid less than their counterparts in the industry while being based in a city with one of the highest costs of living in the country.

Master Executive Council President Sharon Soper said in a news release: “This historic strike vote takes our contract fight to an entirely new level. Hawaiian Flight Attendants are sending an emphatic message to management: Delay is not acceptable; we demand the contract we deserve because we earn it every day. We are safety professionals, and management must acknowledge our worth. Hawaiian is profitable and the time has come for Flight Attendants to share in what we have helped create.”

In January 2017, the National Mediation Board oversaw negotiations when Hawaiian Airlines pilots negotiated a new contract during that year. Flight Attendants, however, have yet to strike a deal with the airline over the past 2 1/2 years. Yet, the airline is known for its level of service as well as its safety.

Hawaiian Airlines Flight Attendants, represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA), today voted 99.9 percent to authorize a strike, with 95.1 percent participating.

“This historic strike vote takes our contract fight to an entirely new level. Hawaiian Flight Attendants are sending an emphatic message to management: Delay is not acceptable; we demand the contract we deserve because we earn it every day. We are safety professionals, and management must acknowledge our worth. Hawaiian is profitable and the time has come for Flight Attendants to share in what we have helped create,” said MEC President, Sharon Soper. Hawaiian Flight Attendants are paid less than their counterparts in the industry, yet they are based in the most expensive cities in the United States and are renowned for their safety record and level of service.

Negotiations began in January 2017 and are overseen by the National Mediation Board (NMB).  Lack of progress could lead to the NMB declaring that negotiations are deadlocked and releasing both parties into a 30-day “cooling off” period leading to a strike deadline. AFA has a trademarked strike strategy known as CHAOS or Create Havoc Around Our System™. With CHAOS, a strike could affect the entire system or a single flight. The union decides when, where, and how to strike without notice to management or passengers.

Hawaiian Flight Attendants have picketed at Honolulu and LAX airports over the last six months. Hawaiian pilots negotiated a new contract in 2017, but Flight Attendants still face labor unrest.

Hawaiian Airlines told eTurboNews, the strike will not reflect the holiday season:

Hawaiian Airlines said: ” Under the Railway Labor Act, a strike is illegal until the National Mediation Board releases both parties from mediation and a 30-day “cooling off” period expires. After that, if a Presidential Emergency Board is not created, the parties may engage in Self Help which could range from the company instituting changes or the union engaging in a work stoppage. If a Presidential Emergency Board is established, that process must conclude first as well.

None of these have happened yet. Therefore, this strike vote will not affect our guests’ holiday travel plans

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