United recently announced a plan to reduce the number of flight attendants working in the Polaris business class cabin by one per flight. Flight attendants aren’t happy with the change, or with other recent staffing cuts and issues, and as a response, are planning a company-wide day of protest in December.
On February 1, United Airlines is making a change to its staffing that has flight attendants upset: the company will decrease the amount of attendants in Polaris business class by one for each flight. That move, combined with other changes recently made by the airline, is sparking a company-wide day of protest on December 13.
Flight attendants belonging to the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) plan to form picket lines that day at several airports across the country: Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, San Francisco International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, and Newark Liberty International Airport, and more, the Chicago Business Journal reported.
“We are taking our fight public because our fight affects the traveling public too, and management should not only be answering to Wall Street,” the AFA said in a memo to its members, reported by the Chicago Business Journal. “The people on planes are the ones who matter.”
Other issues the flight attendants will be protesting are poor accommodations during bad weather and out-of-the-norm operations, payroll issues, and some scheduling problems that force flight attendants to work an overnight transcontinental flight then immediately hop on another flight in the morning.
“We will continue to work closely with the AFA on issues that are important to our flight attendants,” a spokesperson for the airline told the Chicago Business Journal. “We don’t expect any impact on our customers.”