WASHINGTON, DC (August 20, 2008) – Flight attendants at US Airways, represented by the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA), are outraged over the announcement that seven of the airline’s top executives were recently awarded stock appreciation grants totaling millions of dollars. On August 5, 2008, less than one week after US Airways began charging passengers two dollars for non-alcoholic beverages, the company’s Board of Directors Compensation Committee approved over 800,000 shares as part of the airline’s “Equity Incentive Plan”. Chairman and CEO Doug Parker received 275,000 shares.
The stock appreciation rights have an exercise price of $6.70, the fair market value of the company’s common stock on the date of grant. The stock appreciation rights have a seven-year term and vest in one-third increments on each of the first three anniversaries of the date of grant. The stock appreciation rights also become fully vested upon termination due to death, disability, retirement, or in the event of a change in control of the company.
“It is disheartening to watch US Airways top executives enrich themselves with ‘performance’ based stock awards while flight attendants continue to work under a bankruptcy driven contract that slashed wages and eliminated pensions and benefits,” said US Airways East AFA-CWA president Mike Flores. “While US Airways has improved its on-time performance, the airline still ranks number one in customer complaints which makes it even harder to justify this ‘performance’ bonus.”
US Airways West AFA-CWA president Lisa LeCarre, who represents the America West flight attendants of US Airways added, “While management has every right to award themselves performance based stock grants, it is a slap in the face to the hard working flight attendants who are facing job losses and have not received a simple cost-of-living increase in almost six years. It is also an affront to the passengers being nickeled and dimed for such comforts as a glass of water. When will corporate America understand the devastating effects of this erosion on public and employee moral and trust?”
For over 60 years, the Association of Flight Attendants has been serving as the voice for flight attendants in the workplace, in the aviation industry, in the media and on Capitol Hill. More than 55,000 flight attendants at 20 airlines come together to form AFA-CWA, the world’s largest flight attendant union. AFA is part of the 700,000-member strong Communications Workers of America (CWA), AFL-CIO.