We Can’t Go Back to Before We Had Representation at US Airways

Thoughts from Angela Baack, US Airways Premium Services, CLT

I remember what US Airways was like before we won representation; I wouldn’t go back for anything.

A few years after I started in the Charlotte club, the CEO came to the airport for a new luxury cabin unveiling. He seemed nice, chatted with those of us working and then he asked me what one change I would make if I could. I told him how Piedmont (which we had just merged with) used to have peanuts to snack on and I’d heard some complaints from former Piedmont customers who missed that.

I didn’t think anything of it until the next day, when our station, and clubs across the country, got giant boxes of peanuts shipped to us from headquarters. I thought it was great customer service. But when my local supervisors found out I had said that to the CEO, they decided it was insubordination, got extremely angry and sent me home for a few days without pay, not knowing if I was going to keep my job.

With union representation like we have today, that would never happen.

Our company is making huge profits, but management is determined to outsource more and more of our work so they can pad stockholder pockets. They keep cutting front-line employees and hiring people at minimum wage to replace us, shouldn’t it be obvious that’s bad for customer service and our company’s brand?

Do you think management will let us keep profit sharing if we lose our contract? I’m positive it’s the first thing they’ll take, right before cutting our insurance.

Before organizing with the union we were: paid a lot less money, constantly dealing with staffing issues, anxious from lack of job security and favoritism, and in the club we did most of the cleaning ourselves for years.

With union representation, it’s a totally different company and I go into work every day grateful for the protections I have. And with union dues costing me only a dinner and a movie a month, the decision is a no-brainer.

We need to open our eyes to how much worse things can get if we lose this vote, not just for us at US Airways who would immediately lose our protections, but for folks at American Airlines the outsourcing will only get worse.

If we don’t vote YES for the CWA-IBT Association, our friends and coworkers from both carriers will lose jobs as they contract more and more out.

No union no job security, it’s as simple as that. That’s why I’m voting YES for a strong, unified voice at work!