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Thursday, April 28, 2016
Call to Action – Norwegian Air International – LAA/LUS
On April 15, 2016, the U.S. Department of Transportation issued a ruling to allow Norwegian Air International (NAI) tentative approval for access to the Open Skies agreement between the European Union and the United States. NAI has made no secret about their plans to base the operation in Ireland to take advantage of labor laws which will allow the Company to use cheap foreign labor to undercut the airlines of the U.S.
The Department of Transportation has granted tentative approval to Norwegian Air International’s (NAI) application for a foreign carrier permit. This comes in spite of strong opposition from US labor groups. The US/European Union (EU) Open Skies Agreement was an historic bilateral agreement that not only expanded opportunities for consumers and businesses but protected our high labor standards.
If granted, Norwegian Air International (NAI) will be a Norwegian company by name only, as it will register its aircraft in Ireland, evade the laws of Norway, and hire crews based in Thailand under individual contracts governed by the laws of Singapore. NAI’s operating plan, as detailed in its application to the DOT, would violate the terms and clear intent of the labor provisions (Article 17 bis) embodied in the Open Skies Agreement that embrace “high labor standards.” The Association of Professional Flight Attendants now represents over 25,000 members and is the largest independent mainline Union in the world. We need to protect our American aviation jobs from outsourcing! The transatlantic market is the busiest in the world and one that is extremely important for US-based airlines and the hundreds of thousands of American workers they employ.
APFA National President Bob Ross issued the following statement shortly after the news was announced. “APFA is deeply disappointed in today’s tentative approval by the U.S. Department of Transportation to allow Norwegian Air International to begin regular flights to the U.S. In addition to the battle against aggressive carriers based in the Persian Gulf region, this is an important fight for us to take on for the 25,000 Flight Attendants at American Airlines, and for our sisters and brothers at other airlines in America. Airlines based in the United States want to compete, but we expect the U.S. Government to insist on a level playing field.”
Click the image below to tell DOT Secretary Foxx to protect our jobs, and to reconsider and reject NAI’s application!
Thank you for taking the time to voice your concerns. If NAI is allowed access to the Open Skies Agreement via a “flag of convenience” it will have long-term repercussions on our profession.
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