5.17.13 – (LAA) – Press Release – Pressure Mounts on TSA Over Knife Rule

APFA Press Release

Airline Trade Group, American Public Add Voices to Effort
Leslie Mayo (858)859-2732
Anthony DeMaio (508)417-3139
May 17, 2013 (Euless, TX) –The Association of Professional Flight Attendants, representing more than 16,000 employees at American Airlines, announced the results of a national survey regarding TSA’s knives policy:

When asked if the current policy of prohibiting passengers from carrying knives on commercial flights is a good policy or one that should be changed, an overwhelming 90 percent or respondents favored the current restrictions. The percentage was virtually identical for frequent flyers and non-frequent flyers alike.

“The results of the survey confirm that the American people have the same common sense approach to aviation security that the APFA, other flight attendant groups, pilots, air marshals, and TSA screeners share,” said APFA President Laura Glading. “I hope Secretary Napolitano and Administrator Pistole will consider this data and stop this rule change. Knives do not belong in airplane cabins – period.”

The survey was conducted by Penn Schoen Berland from May 7-9, 2013, among 1,206 likely voters. The margin of error is +/-2.82.

Adding to the pressure was an official comment from Airlines for America (A4A), the trade organization of the principal U.S. airlines. Citing a clear mandate from Congress, the risk presented to passengers and crew, and a lack of evidence to support the rule, A4A recommended that the knives policy be rescinded.

Previously, executives from American, US Airways, United, Alaska Airlines and others issued public letters to TSA Administrator Pistole asking that the rule not be implemented.

“The broad coalition that has organized to block this action speaks for itself,” Glading said. “You’d be hard-pressed to find another issue in today’s discourse that so many people agree on. It’s a no-brainer.”

About APFA – Founded in 1977, the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) is the largest independent Flight Attendant union in the nation. It represents the 17,000 Flight Attendants at American Airlines. APFA Members live in almost every state of the nation as well as several countries and serve millions of Americans as they travel the nation and the world. In 2003, APFA played a major role in keeping American Airlines solvent and out of bankruptcy by giving back an employee bailout of $340 million in annual salary and benefits, for a total of over $3 billion and counting. APFA had been in negotiations with American for almost four years when the carrier filed for chapter 11-bankruptcy protection on November 29, 2011. Laura Glading, a 34-year flight attendant, is serving her second four-year term as president of the union.

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