Friday, January 15, 2021
Last weeks violent riot at the U.S. Capitol was something we never thought we would witness in the United States of America. Many of us are still processing the event. Please remember that our EAP representatives stand ready to assist you.
Recently, we have seen an increase in disruptive and threatening behavior while on duty. Along with American, we have an obligation to ensure you are as safe as possible at work. Over the last week, your Union Leadership has been meeting with American Airlines Leadership to ensure your safety.
In conjunction with AA Corporate Security, the following flight, layover, and transportation safety measures will be implemented for the Washington, D.C. area (BWI, IAD and DCA):
- Alcohol will not be served in any class of service between January 16th and January 21st.
- Crews will be located away from downtown Washington, D.C. through January 24th.
- Private transportation (Uber) will be available for crews laying over in the area, both to and from the hotel, through January 24th.
- Flight Service Managers will be visible at the gates to assist Flight Attendants.
- Pilots will deliver a special PA.
- Captains will be asked to conduct a thorough crew briefing to review security procedures and the handling of any potential threatening situations.
Additionally, crews scheduled to layover at hotels near state capitols in other cities will be temporarily relocated.
FAA Adopts Stricter Policy on Unruly Passengers
From the FAA Press Release:
“Effective immediately, however, the FAA will not address these cases with warnings or counseling. The agency will pursue legal enforcement action against any passenger who assaults, threatens, intimidates, or interferes with airline crew members. This policy will be in effect through March 30, 2021.
Passengers who interfere with, physically assault, or threaten to physically assault aircraft crew or anyone else on an aircraft face stiff penalties, including fines of up to $35,000 and imprisonment. This dangerous behavior can distract, disrupt, and threaten crewmembers’ safety functions.”
We thank Administrator Dickson for his support of flight crewmembers. Flight Attendants must be protected to the fullest extent possible as we perform our role as safety professionals. This order sends a clear message on how passengers are expected to behave and that inflight disruptions will be taken seriously.
For Flight Attendants, however, air rage is not new. We have been dealing with issues caused by shrinking seat sizes, passenger disagreements, mask compliance, etc., for quite a while. This past week has demonstrated new risks involved with air travel, and Flight Attendants continue to report for duty to ensure our passengers’ safety and security. While our immediate concern is to maintain safe and secure flights next week, we see no reason why this common-sense policy shouldn’t become permanent. We will advocate that this policy remains in place beyond March 30.
We will not tolerate abusive, threatening behavior on the aircraft. If you feel uncomfortable, please make sure you involve other Flight Attendants and the Flight Deck. Your safety and security is our priority.
APFA National President